Kind of felt like the last day of school in El Segundo today, with the last practice of the season. Afterward, there was a nice little surprise in the dressing room for a handful of guys. Those who scored their first NHL goal this season (Ivanans, Koipitar, O’Sullivan, Weaver and Zeiler) received a framed package that included the puck from the goal, a copy of the score sheet from that game and a picture of the player. It was a really nice touch by the Kings’ training staff and the players had fun checking out each other’s plaques.
As for some housekeeping issues, Rob Blake had his surgery today and Derek Armstrong, who was hit by Keith Ballard and aggravated his previous knee injury, most likely won’t play on Saturday.
I’m happy to report that Jack Johnson survived his first road trip, and I do mean “survived.” Johnson roomed with Tom Kostopoulos, who is widely known as the team practical joker. Kostopoulos played it cool though, and didn’t prank Johnson until Friday morning, when, before practice, Kostopoulos poured a cup of water into Johnson’s helmet. Johnson put it on and gave himself a pregame shower.
More, a bit later, on the World Championships and Dan Cloutier.