For the Kings, the domino effect of last night’s trade for Jeff Carter was good news for one rookie and bad news for another. The departure of Jack Johnson opened a spot on defense, which the Kings filled by calling up Slava Voynov from Manchester. The flip side was the assignment of Andrei Loktionov to the AHL. Why Loktionov? Largely, it seems, because of position. The Kings have three top healthy centers, in Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards and Jarret Stoll, while Loktionov has been less effective on the wing. So, rookie wingers Dwight King and Jordan Nolan stay, while Loktionov goes. Darryl Sutter addressed the moves today, and pointed out that Loktionov could return after Monday. After the trade deadline passes, teams are allowed to expand their rosters as long as they remain under the salary cap.
SUTTER: “It’s a 23-man roster, and to be able to recall Slava, we’re not going to waive somebody and risk losing him, and that’s a 24-hour thing. We’ve got a couple of kids here that don’t need waivers, and Lokti has got to continue to play. With Jarret back healthy, you bring Carter in and you’re not playing Lokti on the fourth line. It just doesn’t suit him, and he’s pretty much got to play center. With Richie [Mike Richards] and Kopi and Jarret, and Fraz [Colin Fraser] as your fourth-line centerman, it’s way better that he’s playing. In five days, you have total access to him anyway. With a 23-man roster now, in order to bring Slava up, you’ve got to free a spot up. It’s really got nothing to do with performance. It’s like when we sent Slava down, we sent him down to make room for King and Nolan on the roster when Jarret went on I.R. It’s just accounting.’’