A dream team?

Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson have periodically been paired together this season, usually during the third period of a tight game. Tuesday’s game was the first time that Doughty and Johnson were paired together for an entire game and reviews, at least from Terry Murray, were good…

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Question: What was the thought process when you decided to put Doughty and Johnson together?

MURRAY: “Just like we do with the forwards, we’re looking for some chemistry on our blue line. We had some good chemistry with Drew and O’Donnell, but we felt that in the Phoenix game, Greene and Jack were a little out of sync. They ended up being on the ice for some plays that hurt us. Change sometimes brings focus back to details. When you change, you’re maybe not just relying on instinctive play as much. You really have to be alert when you’re playing as a new pair. Those kids played big minutes and important minutes for us.”

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  • Dannybuoy

    As long as they keep Matt and Jack far away from one another, I am happy. They were so bad on Saturday.

  • Ersberg

    So..JDMFDJ

    You heard it here first.

  • AK47

    hahahaha Ersberg…

    I love seeing these two play together, and sooner or later maybe they’ll be the next Pronger-Niedermayer..

  • fyzzix

    Hey Rich-

    Sorry for the off-topic post, but I saw some of your quotes from the DL interview that weren’t sourced:

    http://www.thewhig.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1445475

    I know that this is the age of the internet where it only takes a few keystrokes to take something and re-appropriate it, but they’re really making it seem as if they’re making that content out to be their own…

  • Anonymous

    AK47,

    I’m hoping for something more like Stevens-Neidermeyer

  • Tito Jackson

    I’m pretty stoked for this pairing if it gels.

  • Irish Pat

    AK47,

    I’d rather go with Niedermayer-Stevens as a comparison. No offense to you my friend, I just cringe thinking that the Kings may follow in the Ducks footsteps in any capacity… except for winning the Cup.

    fyzzix,

    Wow, great catch. That’s pretty shady journalism there from the Kingston Whig Standard unless someone can clarify the rationale behind the usage of Rich’s quote. And what’s with the Whig handle. Do people in Kingston think Millard Fillmore was the shit?

  • AK47

    Ya, that’d be an even nicer comparison..

    What do you guys think it will take for the Penguins to trade Ryan Whitney over to us? And Alex Goligoski is a RFA at the end of the year, watch Dean Lombardi pull off a Kevin Lowe and go over sheet him!

    jk jk, but it might happen?

  • variable

    i like how the coaching staff has told jj to worry about his own zone rather than offense at this point…his offensive game will come along in time…

    ak47…

    ryan whitney…i like his size and skill…
    but…
    pittsburg has noooobody on d…i can’t see them moving him unless there’s a contract impasse or they get a phenomenal package…i don’t think d.l. wants to give up any prospects he’s on the fence with until maybe draft day or training camp…with so many young prospects coming up, you would have to figure that d.l. wants to give all these guys a solid training camp next season and then make his decisions then…

    man…next season’s training camp is going to be unreal…!

  • Tim

    Is Guathier going to be playing tonight?

  • AK47

    You’re right, next year’s training camp is going to ridiculous. But I have to disagree with you on Pittsburgh not having enough defenseman. They’ve made it clear that they want to trade Ryan Whitney because they have too MANY defenseman, and need to clear up cap space. At the moment, they have 8 defenseman active (Gonchar, Whitney, Boucher, Orpik, Letang, Gill, Scuderi, Eaton, Goglioski).

    They have more defenseman then we do, and i’m sure if we were to deal for Ryan Whitney, we’d send them Sean O’Donnel/Tom Preissing or Denis Gauthier.

  • Irish Pat

    AK47,

    Ryan Whitney is good, but the Kings are fairly loaded on the blueline in the near future and I could see them trade a D-man prospect or veteran like Preissing or Gauthier before obtaining someone like Whitney. I think if Lombardi does anything significant it’ll be to secure a top six forward and that may not happen until the draft. But hey, watch me be way off and DL obtains Whitney. It is fun playing armchair GM though.

  • JDM

    Pittsburg will only trade Whitney for wingers, something we can’t afford to give up. To hell with Whitney anyways.

    Training camp next season is going to be great, but I want OD around one more year, Gauthier gone, Harrold on wing, Voynov/Hickey/Tuebert in the minors another year. Drewiske I’d be down to play most of the season next year, just going off his stint this year, but I think to really contend for a playoff spot from the getgo next season, we would do well to sign one more youngish veteran dman for the bottom pairing. Skrastins, Boynton, Morris, Kalinin, Mara, Kuba, McKlaren, one of these level guys would help a lot in my opinion and allow the young dmen to take their time maturing. Next year is playoff year, this year was trial by fire year.

  • variable

    ak47…

    i wouldn’t include boucher, scuderi, gill or eaton in that group…they are an older blueline with five guys over 30…i think all those guys are tradeable commodities…and look at their team stats…
    they currently give up the 5th most goals against in the whole league…!
    marc-andre fleury has a .907% save….and he’s there #1, so that d-core has not done it’s job…i watch them a lot on center ice and it hasn’t changed any since danny b has taken over…

  • variable

    i can’t wait to next year’s training camp…i’m going to make it a point to travel and watch it as it takes place…

    look out….it’s going to be a real exciting time to be a fan!

  • JDM

    Hah, totally forgot about Preissing… again. Hopefully he never plays another game as a King. Good guy on the wrong team. Who knows, with Vish and Grebs out, maybe Edmonton will take him on for a pick… but helping them out isn’t ideal either.

    It would really be a shame to have to buy him out too.

  • AK47

    Calgary also needs a D-man, and so does Washington. There are tons of teams who are in need of veteran D presence, and we have 2 guys who can go, Gauthier and Preissing. I’m not sure what Dean wants to do with Sean O’Donnell though..

  • Quisp

    Hmm, Kings d at training camp:

    Doughty
    Johnson
    Quincey
    Greene
    Harrold
    ——
    Drewiske
    Voynov
    Campbell
    Martinez
    Kidd
    Hickey
    Teubert

    Preissing will be traded, waived or bought out.
    Gauthier — traded; I think someone will want him as a spare part for a playoff run.
    SOD — hard to say if he gets dealt or not.

    I think Voynov has a great shot to make the team next year. But he will have to be the fastest offensive d man out of the bunch that includes Hickey, Martinez and Harrold. I think (hope) he’ll make it and Hickey will spend the year in Manchester, joining the Kings in ’10-11. Martinez probably will be the odd man out.

    Among the trees, you’ve got Teubert, Campbell and (the biggest of the bunch at 6’5″) Kidd. Campbell has more pro experience; will he be ready first? Or ever? Kidd is a few years away, apparently. One of the three could make it next year. Teubert, certainly by the following year (lest the blog grumbling begin). Maybe Campbell jumps in. If not, there’s Drewiske, and if not Drewiske, then there’s the SOD or SOD-type wily old d signing to be had.

    In any case, I will be surprised if Preissing or Gauthier are around by that time.

  • variable

    quisp…

    it’s going to be a great to watch these kids develop and see who wants it more…

    look at all those defensemen you’ve named…that is just crazy…!

    i cannot remember/research anytime in our 42 year history where we had this much talent…i don’t think it’s ever happened…it’s going to be a tremendous training camp next season, for sure!

  • Irish Pat

    JDM and Quisp,

    I’m surprised you guys have Hickey in the minors next season. He seems to have a leg up on Teubert and Voinov in his development and maturity. Pairs I would like to see next season:

    Doughty – JMFJ
    Greene – Quincey
    O’Donnell – Hickey

    I realize O’Donnell will have to play out of position, but he did such a great job with Doughty I hope he sticks around/comes back next season. Also, I think a future power play with Fro/Kopi/Moller and Doughty/Hickey is very intriguing.

  • Quisp

    Irish Pat, re Hickey:

    I’m just trying to be realistic, given the usual trajectory of defensive prospects, and especially given the fact that Hickey is small-ish and still looks like a child. It just seems likely that he’ll need a year in minor pro before making the jump. To be clear, I believe this kid has as much a shot as you can have of being the next Brian Leetch. Personally, from what I’ve read and seen, he seems like some kind of hockey savant, hockey Rain Man. The kid’s already talking coaching after his pro career is over, for crying out loud. I just don’t think it’s realistic to think he can play with the grown-ups this upcoming October. (I know he had a good camp last year and at times looked better than Doughty.)

    On the other hand, I didn’t think Moller was going to be ready this year, either. And I’m a huge Moller fan.

    I want to underline: I am a huge Hickey fan. I am in no way pessimistic about him in any way other than he still seems like such a high school kid. Teubert, too. Give them time to grow up a little.

    Voynov (who, if Hickey looks 13, Voynov looks 16) at least will have had a year of minor pro experience.

    p.s. I would just like to point out the genius of the Lubo trade. As I said at the time, with Hickey and Doughty in the pipeline, a aging speedy offensive defenseman (lubo) was redundant. And that was before Voynov turned out to be (at least so far) such a steal, and Harrold turned it up a notch. If Lubo wasn’t dealt then, he would have been dealt sooner or later, and for much less value.

  • Irish Pat

    Quisp,

    I love that: Rain Man of hockey. Besides the movie reference it’s kind of funny that he’s playing in Seattle. I wonder if he got his hockey sense at K-Mart?

    I totally agree with Teubert developing in junior, but Voinov is 18 and I’d like him to spend another season in Manchester. Apparently he’s still very raw, but I haven’t seen him play yet so I’m getting my info second hand. If Hickey doesn’t make it out of training camp I hope he gets called up for spot duty during the season. I’m just anxious to see what he has to offer.

    I’ve said it before that I don’t think the Lubo trade would’ve happened if we picked first last June and selected Stamkos and I knew that I’d miss him playing for the Kings, but I’m amazed at how quickly that feeling has passed with Doughty’s playing. It’s funny remembering how many people (including me) were disillusioned when we “lost” the draft lottery to Tampa. And you’re right about getting far less in return if Lombardi didn’t jump on that trade, especially since Lubo would have had to say yes because of the no trade clause. Yikes.

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