It’s not easy being green

Brian Boyle played in three of the Kings’ first four games — he had zero points and a minus-4 rating in a fourth-line center role — but has been a healthy scratch for the last four games. Boyle has spent practices in the green jersey signifying players who are out of the lineup. The Kings have asked 6-foot-6 Boyle to play a tougher game, and I talked to Boyle today about the challenge of getting back into the lineup…

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Question: It’s been a while now since you got in a game. Have they given you any indication about when that might change?

BOYLE: “No, I haven’t heard much lately. It’s tough right now, and guys are playing pretty well too. It’s a tough spot. You’ve just got to come to work every single day, as hard as you can. That’s what I’ve got to do, just be harder in everything that I do. Be more physical with puck possession and stuff like that. (Murray) has pointed out specific things in games, and I have clips from all my games so far and the preseason games, and I’m just watching them over and over, just to get a better idea. Like I said, you want the team to do well, so it’s tough, because you want to get back in it and be a contributor to it.”

Question: The stuff that they’re asking you to do and show, is that easy to accomplish in practice, rather than a game situation?

BOYLE: “It’s more just a mentality that you have to take. It’s kind of an attitude that I have to have more of in my game. It’s been stated to me, and people have told me that at a few different points in past years, and I have to do a better job of being more consistent with it. I know I have that part of the game; I just have to bring it out. Sometimes unfortunately it takes a little kick in the butt, but I have to bring it up again. I have to bring it up a couple levels to be a contributor on this team, which is what I really want to do. But I’m still here, and this is where I want to be.”

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  • cristobal

    I still would rather Boyle try and emulate Marian Hossa than Mathew Barnaby.
    If he’s half the player Rick Nash is he should be getting the grooming to replace Handzus, not Zeiler.
    Just send him back to Manchester and let him play his game. Enough with the “get tougher” routine.

  • Deelo

    Johan Franzen is a big dude who is considered soft. He is now 28 years old and finally finding his game.

    If Brian Boyle takes this career path as a King and just motivates himself up a couple notches and play to his size he will be fine.

    Here is hoping for the best. The potential is absolutely there.

  • Deelo

    Johan Franzen is a big dude who is considered soft. He is now 28 years old and finally finding his game.

    If Brian Boyle takes this career path as a King and just motivates himself up a couple notches and play to his size he will be fine.

    Here is hoping for the best. The potential is absolutely there.

  • anthony

    Its pretty hard to play tough when you’re just playing 7 minutes a game with Armstrong as your line-mate.

  • Nick

    No it’s not. That doesn’t even make sense, anthony.

    I understand that people want Boyle (and all of the young guys) to succeed, but it was pretty clear that Boyle needed to change something after his efforts in his first few games. He was practically invisible. He may only get 7, 8, 9 minutes a night, but he has to make the most of those. He wasn’t doing it, so he got sent to the press box. He’ll get in another game soon and we’ll see if anything changed.

    He doesn’t need to be a big, mean bruiser, but he does need to utilize his size better.

  • Roger

    I can agree with the coachs assessment. This league requires for players to play up to their size. And he has the size to play with a little bit of an edge. Have a strong presence in front of the net and along the boards. He is not the type of player to be cutesy with the puck. So he has got to be a north south player and have a very strong presence in front of the net and score those ugly goals.

    Roger

  • Roger

    Nick,

    Its what you do with those 7 – 9 minutes that gives the coach the confidence to put you out there for more minutes. And Boyle did not show that

    Roger

  • JDM

    I totally agree with Roger.

    Luckily I think the Kings are committed to Boyle long term and I can only see him getting dealt or something if he would seal the deal on a trade for a high quality winger. Other than that, I think Boyle easily gets a new contract if he’s willing to sign. The Kings knew he was a long term project when they drafted him, and it looks like they are willing to wait because they (and myself) have a lot of faith that Boyle will be a great asset to this team 2-3 years down the line. It’s kind of annoying that he isn’t right now, but he will be. He’ll learn.

    I assume he will get another couple of games to prove himself during this homestand. If he doesn’t then he definately should get sent back to Manchester in favor or Purcell or Lewis. No point in benching him upwards of 10 games. And I only say Lewis may get a call-up first because there is more room for him on the 4th line than there is for Purcell on the top 9, assuming Moller and Simmonds stay that is.

  • jet

    We just need to be patient witn Brian. It seems that he is taking a little more time to understand his defensive responsibilities. I am not sure if I posted this before, but I think Brian would benefit from a little extra one v. one work on the half board, corner and behind the net. Maybe against Zues or Fro. He is really not that far away, but it is tough to stick him out there before he is accomplidhed on the D side.

  • Chris h.

    This “what you do with those 7 – 9 minutes..” stuff won’t work for Boyle in a GRINDER role. Boyle is NOT a grinder. He ain’t going to show anything there. Period.

    If DL and Co. can’t accept that, then why don’t they ship his ass out like they did Tukonen?
    Unfortunately, like Tukonen, his stock has fallen and probably isn’t worth much at all. It’s too bad because both guys are capable NHLers. I’m expecting a trade soon…Boyle for “who?”, a minor league grinder similar to what’s his name? Clune?

  • Nick

    He doesn’t have to play like a grinder. Just like Frolov doesn’t have to be a pure defensive forward because he’s playing on the checking line. He has to play hard and show effort and make the most of his time. He wasn’t doing it before, so he got sent to the press box. Pretty simple.

  • cristobal

    Personallly, I’d love to see a Rookie line -

    Moller – Boyle – Simmods

    If you want to shock the league and the teams you’re competing with, there’s nothing better than a line of kids who are a handful and make the other team’s vets look old. I think they would combine size, skill, and speed for a potentially deadly line. Give them one game together to see what happens.

  • Chirs Bond

    I think the guy is pimp (for you old guys that means good) The guy is big and can play the game, I like that they are putting him thru this it might work I want to see him start to use what god gave him and
    put a few guys THRU the boards. He played well last
    year I just hope they give him a shot in the next few
    weeks by then he should be good and pissed. If he
    dont do what they ask then well we can all talk shit
    about him in the pee wee leauge.

  • cristobal

    Mr. Bond – It sounds as though you’ve seen Boyle over a stretch of games. Have you? I still haven’t seen anything beyond the glimmer of talent he’s gotten in 2 or 3 games with the Kings and would love to know what he’s capable of.

  • Chirs Bond

    Cristobal
    Yes I have liked him from the get go everyone who
    is talking crap now just doesnt know what he is
    capable of, This is a good thing for him now..Murry
    is given him a chance to simmer, You will see what I
    mean when they give him his next shot and everyone
    will sing his praises then…..Are you from LA I just
    moved from there to Fort Worth Tx so I have to get
    all the info from here (WOW Rick is GREAT) and just
    go to 3 games here in Dallas and every game I can
    when I go home, HUGE HUGE FAN!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    i go to smu and we’re getting a group together for the november 13th game here in Dallas, hopefully we can all go out and make some noise for the kings on the road.

  • Chirs Bond

    Type”O” RICH this is great……

  • kb

    cristobal and anthony said it right. let him play his game and see what that can bring to the team. look at how brown has developed a physical presence, he hasn’t always played like that, you have to learn and earn that grittiness

  • kb

    cristobal and anthony said it right. let him play his game and see what that can bring to the team. look at how brown has developed a physical presence, he hasn’t always played like that, you have to learn and earn that grittyness

  • nykingfan

    Chris H
    Ho do you know whether a player should or shouldn’t be a grinder? Especially one we’ve only seen for a short period of time.
    the coaches obviously think he needs to use his size better.
    Maybe you’ve seen this guy playing his whole life and know better. I seriously doubt that, but you never know.
    Let things play out over time with Boyle. He’s a 22 year old kid with less than 15 games of NHL experience. I’m sure a 6’6″ 1st round draft choice would garner a huge amount of interest from around the league. Right now, he’s ours and if he does the things the coaches are asking him to do, he’ll be a long term fixture in the Kings lineup.

    I brought up the comparison yesterday of Boyle and Sully. In order for Sully to get back to the NHL he needed to change the way he played the game. He did and now he’s on his way to becoming a star in this league. Sometimes the coaches know better than everyone.

  • CUP4LA

    Trading him would be a huge mistake. This si not the same situation as Tukonen who had already spent two years in the pros and the organization could guage his progress (or lack thereof).

    Boyle is now going through what O’Sullivan went through a couple of years ago where he is in the process of learning the level of intensity it takes to stick.

    From what I’ve read about Boyle, he has a good attitude (unlike Tukonen)and will make every effort to take his game to the next level.

  • KingMarty33

    first off i would like to thank you rich for all the hard work you put in for this blog.

    my 2 cents= i would like to see mr Boyle play like Eric
    Lindros did.and since Mr lindros has some free time
    how about AEG hiring him as a consultant for a block of
    instuction for mr boyle, as i see the monster he could be lurking just under the surface.

  • jet

    Great quote form Stoll from thn: Its nice to see a lot of the guys here consider themselves team leaders, regardless of whether or not they have a letter on their jersey. I like to think of myself as a leader as well. I take pride in that and its nice to play that role alongside teammates with a similar mindset.

  • Steve

    First of all, Brian Boyle will be 24 in December. Here are my observations having watched him in Manchester all of last year and at Boston College prior to that. 1) Good hands with a knack to find the net on occasion. 2) Needs to work on his skating. 3) Needs to develop more of a mean streak in himself. 4) Plays a little soft. 5) Good team player and hockey smart. He understands game situations.

    All of this being said, Brian Boyle needs to decide if he wants to become good NHL player or just a journeyman AHL player. I am not convinced that a return trip to Manchester is going to accomplish that although we could sure use him down here on the power play.

  • Chirs Bond

    Well I will be at the Stars game on November 13th
    I got tickets today from Stub Hub today in section
    122 row J…I wear a Crown to all the games so feel
    free to come say hi. Has anyone ever got tickets
    from Stub Hub this is a first for me becase I use to
    get all my tickets in LA for free…Sucks to pay
    for hockey again, Beer is what kills me me at the
    KINGS games 10 bucks a shot, Hope Tx is cheeper
    that way I can be good and drunk talkin crap to the
    Stars Fans…..Should be a BLAST.