Ryan Smyth, Alexei Ponikarovsky nearing milestones
One more note on the Kings before Saturday night's game against Colorado:
Left wing Alexei Ponikarovsky will play in his 500th NHL game, which is a respectable achievement. But he has a long way to go to catch fellow winger Ryan Smyth: This will be the 994th game of his distinguished NHL career.
Smyth, 34, is scheduled to reach the 1,000-game milestone on Nov. 6, when the Kings face Nashville at Staples Center. It's a moment he has long anticipated.
“There are three things I thought of, coming in the league,” he said. “Playing in the NHL, winning the Stanley Cup — obviously everybody dreams of that — and playing 1,000 games. I think it’s an honor to be in the NHL, and I’m also flattered.”
He said his family will fly in for the game, with his wife making all the arrangements. “I’m looking forward to it," he said. "It should be fun."
Smyth has been the Kings' top scorer so far, with three goals and six points. He's averaging 20 minutes, 19 seconds ice time per game, second among the team's forwards only to Anze Kopitar's average of 20:41.
More later from the Kings-Avalanche game at the Pepsi Center.
-- Helene Elliott in Denver