Yesterday afternoon, Terry Murray said that Dustin Penner “feels confident and is ready to go.’’ Well, things changed, it seems, because today the Kings determined that Penner would not play Thursday against Florida. Penner will stay on injured reserve and miss his ninth consecutive game with a hand injury, so the Kings will stay with the same lineup they used on Monday. Here’s what Murray said about Penner’s status…
MURRAY: “Not quite. Not quite. Closer every day, but not for tomorrow. No setback. Just moving forward with it. He’s getting closer.’’
Question: Independent of that, is there some value to keeping intact the lineup that gave you a pretty good game on Monday?
MURRAY: “There’s value to it, I suppose. I’m not superstitious, though, about those things. I like the way we are starting to get going here. Our game has good pace, doing the right things, moving the puck quickly right now. So the group has been playing well, and it keeps getting pushed up, a little bit, to the next level with every game that goes by. But on the other side of things, too, I always believe that you put your best players into the lineup whenever you’re ready to go, and you play those guys. Penner is a good player, and we’re just waiting our time for him to get a little bit better before he goes in.’’