Two players could make their preseason debuts for the Kings this evening when they face the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center in Denver (5:00 PT / KABC 790 / I Heart Radio).
Neither Jordan Nolan (ankle) nor Matt Greene (illness) remained on the ice for extra work, which is often an indication that they’ll be included in that game’s lineup. Nolan also told reporters yesterday that he felt ready to play and only needed the final sign-off from the club’s doctors and training staff. A quick conversation with the power forward reinforced his availability for tonight.
Greene, meanwhile, has recovered from an illness that “knocked me down for a couple days,” according to the defenseman. “Nothing crazy.”
“It happens. People get sick. That’s it. It happened, it’s over with. Just moving on now.”
Last season, Greene appeared in all 82 games for the third time as a King. He said there was no set number of preseason games he’d like to get into.
“It always varies,” he said. “But right now, there are three games left. I don’t know how many I’m going to play, if I’m going to play all of them or one of ‘em, or whatever. I felt good before I was sick and I feel good coming out of it now, and I’m ready to go.”
Greene took rushes alongside Alec Martinez, a familiar defensive partner, during this morning’s optional morning skate.
Matt Greene, on what a preseason debut is most useful for:
Just playing again. Just playing and getting used to the speed, getting used to playing against guys who you don’t know what they’re doing, and kind of reacting. I think just more the reacting stuff and the timing of the game. Everything speeds up. Using your teammates. This is when it gets fun, though, too. It gets old playing against each other all the time. It’s fun to be able to play against somebody else.
Greene, on making his debut at high altitude:
It’s always a barrier trying to catch your breath, so just deal with it and know it’s all downhill from here, I guess.