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Category: Kings

News and notes from Kings' 2-0 victory over the Sharks


Notes and quotes from the Kings’ 2-0 victory over the San Jose Sharks at Staples Center on Monday:

• The last time the Kings shut out the Sharks at home was March 23, 2002 (3-0).

• Jonathan Quick earned his 18th career shutout and fourth this season. He ranks second in Kings history in shutouts behind Rogie Vachon, who had 32.

• Quick played in his 200th career game Monday, all with the Kings. He’s the sixth goaltender in Kings history to play in 200 games.

• Mike Richards has goals in eight of the last 10 games (9-1--10) and has 18 points in the last 21 games (10-8--18). The Kings are 11-2-2 when Richards records a point.

• Simon Gagne has seven points in the last 10 games (3-4--7)

• Ethan Moreau scored for the first time since Oct. 9, 2010, at San Jose.

• The Kings are 5-2-1 in their last eight games

• The Kings are 6-1-2 vs. the Pacific Division

• The Kings have killed 18 straight penalties, dating back to Nov. 19 vs. Detroit

• The Kings are 9-1-1 when allowing two or fewer goals in a game

• The Kings are 9-2-3 when scoring first

•  Scott Parse is expected to travel to Nashville soon to have his hip evaluated by a specialist.  At that time, a decision is expected to be made whether to have surgery on his hip.  A surgical procedure could sideline Parse for approximately four months.

The Kings are scheduled to practice Tuesday at 11:30 a.m. at Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo and then visit Children’s Hospital Los Angeles.

Kings Coach Terry Murray

On the game: “We had a good feel here tonight, there was good energy and emotion in the game and it got exciting at the end…. There was a real good response to the game against Chicago the other night, we needed to come out fast, we needed to come out with energy and set the tone, and I thought we did. There was a good carryover into the second period. I thought Quick did a tremendous job. That should have been a nice extra boost of energy to start the third period."

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Terry Murray welcomes Dale Hunter to NHL coaching ranks


Kings Coach Terry Murray has fond memories of Dale Hunter, who was hired Monday to succeed Bruce Boudreau as coach of the Washington Capitals.

Hunter, as sneaky-dirty a player as ever laced up skates — but talented enough to score more than 1,000 points — played for the Capitals when Murray was an assistant coach and, later, the team’s coach. Murray recalled the 1987 draft-day deal Washington made with Quebec to get Hunter.

“The draft was in Detroit, and we made a trade at the draft table,” Murray said before the Kings faced the San Jose Sharks at Staples Center. “He came out of the stands and he could hardly walk. He’s limping so bad, and we’re kind of ‘What’s going on here?’

“He had broken his leg near the end of the year and came back and played in the playoffs for the Nordiques. And basically everybody felt he was done because his play was so poor but he had a broken leg still. He came to our table and we welcomed him and we were very happy to have him. It was a good deal for the Washington Capitals.”

Murray recalled Hunter’s skills as clearly as his toughness.

“He was a really good player,” Murray said. “You look back at his stats in Quebec: Michel Goulet was a 50-goal scorer, and that was his left winger. For me he played a skill game but with that edge, that grit, that hard play and actually outright mean sometimes.”

Just ask Pierre Turgeon how mean Hunter was. Hunter viciously checked Turgeon, then with the New York Islanders, after Turgeon scored a goal in the 1993 playoffs and left Turgeon with a separated shoulder. Hunter was suspended for the first 21 games of the 1993-94 season.

“There’s a lot of players you can ask,” Murray said. “He played hard. He played the same on the road and at home. He was a great player, great teammate and he played a long time because of that.”

Murray expects Hunter to bring the same fire to coaching the Capitals.

“He’ll demand stuff be done the right way,” Murray said. “You’ve got to play hard. You’ve got to compete. That’s Dale’s MO. He always did that every day. His reputation, his emotion, he’s got a lot of history in coaching right now. Been at the job for a long time. He’s a good fit for them.”

Boudreau joined Carolina’s Paul Maurice on the unemployment line Monday when the Hurricanes replaced Maurice with former NHL forward Kirk Muller. Murray said the lack of security in his chosen profession hit him as he entered Staples Center Monday and encountered Sharks Coach Todd McLellan as they went through security.

“He said, ‘To get 1,000 games in this game today, man, we just had two more guys go down today,’” Murray said. “It’s a tough business. But it is the business and sometimes that’s what needs to be done in the GM’s eyes.”

-- Helene Elliott

Photo: Capitals Coach Dale Hunter runs practice on Monday at the team's training facility in Arlington, Va. Credit: Patrick McDermott / Getty Images

L.A.'s greatest sports moments No. 17: 'Miracle on Manchester'


We asked you to send in your picks for the greatest sports moments in L.A. history, and 1,181 ballots later we are unveiling the top 20 vote-getters. Each weekday we will unveil a new moment until we reach No. 1.

No. 17: Miracle on Manchester (three first-place votes, 2,508 points)

Ask Kings fans what's their favorite moment in team history and odds are they will say the "Miracle On Manchester."

Ask Kings fans what's their favorite moment in team history and odds are they will say the "Miracle On Manchester"On April 10, 1982, the Kings took on the Wayne Gretzky-led Edmonton Oilers in Game 3 of a best-of-five first-round NHL playoff series. The Oilers were heavy favorites in the series and took a 5-0 lead after two periods of Game 3 at The Forum (located on Manchester Boulevard) Then, the miracle.

Jay Wells took a shot from about 25 feet out that went through the legs of teammate Dave Taylor and past Oilers goaltender Grant Fuhr at 2:46 to make the score 5-1.

Less than three minutes later, Kings forward Doug Smith took a shot that went under the crossbar and into the net. It was 5-2.

The Oilers attempted to clear the puck from their zone, but it was intercepted by Kings forward Dean Hopkins, who quickly passed to Charlie Simmer, who jammed the puck past Fuhr. 5-3.

Later, defenseman Mark Hardy cut past Gretzky and scored. 5-4.

Because of a penalty to Garry Unger, the Kings had a man advantage for the final three minutes of the game. With a minute left, the Kings pulled their goalie for an extra attacker, giving them a two-man advantage. With 45 seconds left in regulation, Marcel Dionne had the puck and skated around, looking for an open shot or pass. Dionne sent the puck to Simmer and headed to the front of the net. Simmer passed to Dionne, who shot, but Fuhr made the save. The rebound slid to the right-wing boards, where Jim Fox took control of the puck from Gretzky. Fox passed to Hardy, who shot. Fuhr stopped it, but the rebound went to Steve Bozek, who scored with five seconds left, tying the score and sending the game into overtime.

Then, 2:35 into overtime, Daryl Evans scored on a slap shot to give the Kings a miraculous 6-5 victory. The rest of the Kings mobbed Evans behind the net as the crowd erupted in disbelief.

The Kings went on to win the series, 3-2, before losing in the second round to Vancouver. But they gave their fans a game they will never forget.


No. 18: Lakers three-peat

No. 19: Rick Monday saves the flag

No. 20: Kobe to Shaq alley-oop

-- Houston Mitchell

Photo: The Kings mob Daryl Evans after the victory. Credit: Associated Press

Kings update: Doughty fined $2,500 for hit on Oshie


Kings' defenseman Drew Doughty escaped the full hammer of NHL justice, receiving a $2,500 fine and no suspension from the league on Wednesday morning.

The fine, which is the maximum allowed  under the collective bargaining agreement, was a result of Doughty's cross-checking St. Louis forward T.J. Oshie into the boards on Tuesday night in St. Louis near the end of the game. He received a two-minute minor penalty for cross-checking.

It looked as though Oshie injured his left shoulder from the hit, but the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that he would be in the lineup for Wednesday night's game at Pittsburgh against the Penguins.

Here is a video clip of the hit, which occurred with two seconds remaining in the game:

-- Lisa Dillman

Photo: The Kings' Drew Doughty pushes Jamie Langenbrunner on Nov. 22. Credit: Dilip Vishwanat / Getty Images.

Dustin Penner: King of Pain

Cursed? Snake-bit?

Kings left wing Dustin Penner used another word to describe this injury-riddled stretch, one consisting of bad luck and bad timing.


Penner was starting to find a small measure of consistency when he took a shot off his hand in the third period against the Vancouver Canucks on Nov. 10, and it landed him on injured reserve. He will travel with the Kings on their short trip to St. Louis and Dallas this week but won’t be returning to the lineup imminently.

“That one caught me square in the knuckles -- that was kind of a freak thing,” Penner said after practice on Monday in El Segundo. “After eight years, I guess I was owed one from standing in front of the net.”

The pain and inflammation from the break has gone down and Penner showed a much better range of motion, saying he has not had any setbacks.

“He’s going to continue doing the conditioning part of it, just get on the ice and do the skating, but he’s not going to play,” Kings Coach Terry Murray said.

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Kings after deadline: Notes and quotes about 5-2 win over Wild

Kings-colin_275Kings Coach Terry Murray on his 1,000th game:

"It doesn't really feel any different, anything special. It's a game that was very important for us to win."

Murray had more to say about his first game as a head coach in the NHL, when he replaced his brother Bryan as Washington's coach in 1990.

"Everything. I remember everything," Murray said. "It was like it happened two years ago. Time goes too fast, doesn't it? It was difficult because in the sense I was replacing my brother. That was hard. I was there as his assistant for six years. I was prepared for an opportunity.

"When I got the phone call, he (GM David Poile) said, 'I just want you to know that a change has been made already. It happened three hours ago. So here’s the deal: If you want to be the head coach, I want you to have the job. If you say no, somebody else is going to get the job.'

“He (Bryan) supported me 100 percent. He was totally on board with me being the person who was selected. I moved forward from there."

Center Colin Fraser, who scored his first goal as a King:

"It feels like a big weight off my shoulders. It was a huge relief. Scoring goals any time feels good. It’s especially good  because of the issues with my foot."


Terry Murray to coach 1,000th game on Saturday

Helene Elliott: Pluses and minuses around the league

Helene Elliott: Kings need to make some noise or they will hear it

--Lisa Dillman

Photo: Colin Fraser, right, celebrates his first goal as a member of the Kings on Saturday night. Credit: Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press

Kings-Canucks: Notes and quotes from Kings' 3-2 loss to Vancouver

Kings Coach Terry Murray, on falling behind, 3-0, to the Canucks in the first period:

"It's very hard to dig out of a hole like that against that kind of a team. They were just too deep, too good. They were President's Trophy winners for a reason. We tried, we worked. I liked everything we were trying to do. On the penalty kill we did a real good job on intensity and compete. I thought we were trying hard in the third period to get back in it. It's too hard to turn the tables sometimes."

On finding the right lines:  "I'm using my top guys, and that's hard work. When you get caught out there, especially the way [Vancouver] passes the puck, you just can't make a change. The goalie can't stop it and there's a lot of anaerobic work and that is fatigue. When they do come back to the bench I have to give them some extra time to recover and that does throw a little wrench into everything, but that's hockey. It takes a little while to get it sorted out so they can get back to normal play again."

On the fourth line, which featured Colin Fraser at center: "I liked our fourth line here tonight with Fraser. That was his first game with the L.A. Kings and not only did he play a pretty determined game, he made a couple plays there in the third period that gave us a look at least."

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Dustin Penner loses a point, Colin Fraser gains a roster spot

The more things change, the fewer points left wing Dustin Penner has.

The Kings announced Thursday that a video review of their third goal against Nashville on Tuesday showed that Penner should not have gotten an assist on the play and it was taken away from him, negating what appeared to be his first multi-point game as a King.

According to a statement released by the team, the review showed “that Penner lifted the stick of a Nashville player but never did touch the puck as the puck moved up the ice.” The assist he originally got was given to Willie Mitchell.

That doesn’t change the fact Penner played a solid game for the second successive night, after a strong effort at San Jose on Monday.

“He’s played better here the last three games. I really like his energy and I like the way he’s starting to move around the ice,” Kings Coach Terry Murray said before his team faced the defending West champion Vancouver Canucks on Thursday night at Staples Center.

“Much more confident, much more with authority. He’s in an athletic position. He’s got his knees bent and he’s playing both ways. And with that kind of work I think everything will get on track in the offensive part of it.”

Continue reading »

Kings after deadline: Notes and quotes from the Kings' 4-3 victory over Nashville

Kings Coach Terry Murray, assessing his team's first win in six games:

“The effort was really good. You are playing a game last night in San Jose, a hard game, and you’ve got a team that’s sitting here fresh watching the game on television and I thought we came out and played a real good first period. I liked the energy, I liked the compete, the tempo and the attitude that we started the game with, and it had a little ebb and flow, I thought, but at the end of the day the compete was very good.”

On Simon Gagne and Mike Richards, who each scored a goal: “If you want to put them on a scale of 1  through 5, I’d give them a 4. They’ve made an adjustment in their life to come to the West Coast and be an L.A. King. That always takes time to get settled with family and kids, and you’ve got other things going on in your life. They are real pros in that they come to the rink every day and they are in their own little sanctuary and come and be good teammates and learning to be members of the team and the style, the culture that we are putting together here. So, that part there gets a 5 in my opinion and their play is a 4. They put points up on the board and they’ve been great pros to help us keep moving through it.”

On the extent of Scott Parse's lower-body injury, which the winger suffered in the first period: "A little more than day-to-day.”

Jarrett Stoll's two assists gave him 300 career points....The last time the Kings scored more than two goals was Oct. 27 at Dallas (their last win before Tuesday)....The Kings have won five of the last six meetings with Nashville.

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Oilers' Ryan Smyth home again, naturally

The man who fits the phrase "the Oilers' Oiler" is back in his native Alberta.

Ryan Smyth is at home in Edmonton, where he started his NHL career all those years ago. He spoke with my Times colleague Helene Elliott shortly before the Oilers' game against the Kings on Thursday night.

Edmonton won, 3-0, and Smyth, the former King, scored the game's first goal.

Of course.

"It's been fun so far," said Smyth, 35, who requested a trade from the Kings in the off-season. "Right from the get-go, in training camp, I got to play with [Ryan] Nugent-Hopkins and [Jordan] Eberle for a while and I've just been enjoying myself and trying to relax and enjoy the teammates. And it's fun while you're winning, too, and we've been successful here lately."

The kids are more than all right in Edmonton.

"These guys have lots of energy, which rubs off," he said. "... It's inspiring. It pushes you and that's what you want. As a player you want to be pushed. And I think the experience that I've gained over the years, hopefully that can go the other way to them, so it's a two-way street."


Kings, Ducks don't want to profit at NBA's expense

Kings lose to Oilers, 3-0

Ducks lose to Rangers in shootout

-- Lisa Dillman

Photo: Edmonton Oilers left wing Ryan Smyth plays in his first game at Staples Center since leaving the Kings in the offseason. Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea / U.S. Presswire

Greatest sports figures in L.A. history, No. 12: Wayne Gretzky

Continuing our countdown of the 20 greatest figures in L.A. sports history, as chosen in voting by our online readers, with No. 12, Wayne Gretzky.

No. 12 Wayne Gretzky (36 first-place votes, 1,547 points)


On Aug. 9, 1988, ithe Edmonton Oilers traded the greatest player in NHL history, Wayne Gretzky, along with Marty McSorley and Mike Krushelnyski, to the Kings for Jimmy Carson, Martin Gelinas, $15 million in cash, and the Kings' first-round draft picks in 1989 (later traded to the New Jersey Devils – New Jersey selected Jason Miller), 1991 (Martin Rucinsky) and 1993 (Nick Stajduhar).

The trade turned Los Angeles from a city with tens of thousands of hockey fans into one with hundreds of thousands of hockey fans. Gretzky scored on his first shot on goal in the first regular-season game and led the Kings into the playoffs his first season. He won the Hart Trophy as league MVP and was named the AP male athlete of the decade.

Gretzky was sidelined for much of the 1992–93 season with a back injury, but still led the team in the playoffs, scoring a hat trick in Game 7 of the Campbell Conference finals against the Toronto Maple Leafs as the Kings made the Stanley Cup Finals for the first (and only) time. The less said about what happened there, the better. Curse you, stick of Marty McSorley!

The next season, Gretzky broke Gordie Howe's career goal-scoring record and won the scoring title, but the Kings failed to make the playoffs during the rest of his tenure with the team. On Feb. 27, 1996, Gretzky was traded to the St. Louis Blues for Patrice Tardif, Roman Vopat, Craig Johnson, and two draft picks.

Many credit Gretzky's trade to the Kings with the creation of the Mighty Ducks and the San Jose Sharks as the NHL spread to places it had never been before.

In 2000, the NHL announced Gretzky's number, 99, would never be worn by another player and in 2002,  the Kings unveiled a life-size statue of Gretzky outside Staples Center.


No. 13: Walter O'Malley

No. 14: Don Drysdale

No. 15: Merlin Olsen

No. 16: Jerry Buss

No. 17: Elgin Baylor

No. 18: Marcus Allen

No. 19: Jim Murray

No. 20: Wilt Chamberlain

Your votes are in: The 20 greatest sports figures in L.A. history

--Houston Mitchell

Photo: Wayne Gretzky with the Kings in 1994. Credit: Los Angeles Times


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