Practice update

Nothing too big to report today. Williams looked good skating this morning but still hasn’t been cleared to handle pucks. Today was Ivanans’ first time back on the ice, so his return isn’t imminent.

Most importantly, Williams plays ping-pong, and he’s good. Williams and Kopitar teamed up for a 22-20 victory over the vaunted Team Red Bull, Armstrong and Richardson.

I got a few things from Quick, about playing in a playoff race, and from Terry Murray, about Kopitar’s recent play, so I’ll try to post that a bit later.

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  • Josh

    Army must have been furious! haha…nonetheless I’m glad williams seems to be fitting in well in the locker room. Not sure if sully did quite well. Anyway…hope ivanans stays outta the lineup…westgarth doesn’t take dumb penalties but still gives us the fighter option…

  • PaulCat1969

    Williams expertise at Ping Pong is all I need to know that this was a great trade for the Kings!

  • johnb


    Do ya think if we went 11-6 we could still make it?
    87 pts seems like it might not be enough but…

  • smokiemcpot

    Agreed. Glad to see he is fitting in with the guys and hopefully adding to the atmosphere of the room. I think he is going to fit well on the line with stoll and fro. At least that is my hope of where he will go. I am liking calder on the fourth too. Much better role for his style and he is able to get open a bit more playing against lower line players. Thought we would look worse losing Sully and not having WIlliams in the line-up right away but we don’t. Moller and Purcell bring way more heart than Sulky.

  • PUCKBOY 25

    Please don’t post negative comments on O’Sullivan. You have no clue what did or didn’t happen in the locker room regarding O’Sullivan.

    Let’s be positive and hope the kings can make it into the playoffs.

    Just sayin’

  • Eric K

    uh-oh, this might drive a wedge between players in the locker room!

  • 28 KINGS

    It will take 90 pts, at least.

  • moontheloon23

    A poster on Carolina’s HF board said something to the effect of: “Williams looks like he’s skating with concrete shoes this year.”

    I imagine that’s largely do to the prolonged recovery time for an ACL injury, as we saw with Handzus last year.

    I certainly hope he regains that speed because it appears to be a huge part of his game.

    As my friend and die-hard Williams fan said: “he’s faster than God.”

    We’ll see.

  • Bob

    He can play ping-pong but he can’t handle a puck?

  • Moondoggie

    Anyone notice that Andrei Loktionov had three goals and an assist Friday night against Plymouth? He now has 24 goals on the season and just seems to be getting better & better…..

  • davesnot here

    He can grip a ping pong paddle, but not a hockey stick?

  • Anonymous


    It says he can’t handle PUCKS, read before you post.

  • Aaron

    Kopitar was exceptional yesterday. He truly is doing the things a dominant number 1 center does.

    I guess right now he fills the number 2 center “box” but at 21, he has a great learning curve.

  • Anonymous

    you only need one hand to play ping pong.

  • Dominic Lavoie

    Hey smart guys,

    Did you stop to consider which hand had a broken finger before wondering aloud why he can play ping pong?

  • Anonymous

    he plays ping pong?

  • anonymous

    Any ides what time the morning skate will be on Monday?

  • Kings4K3

    Hey Rich,

    That’s great that he’s fitting in well with the boys, but do you know or could you find out what the results were of his examination he had with the hand specialist he was supposed to see? I’d love to see what this guy can do on the ice, and I’d like it even better if his prognosis was good and we can see him play before the final playoff spot in the West is decided.

    Also, for those of you who don’t normally play ping-pong, you don’t usually wrap you fingers around the handle of the paddle the way you would have to with a hockey stick. Instead, you kind of hold it as if it were a giant pencil (if that’s a good analogy) and the force that you use to hold it would be no where near what you would have to use to grip onto a stick. So I can see why he would be able to play ping pong and not really be bothered. Plus, as Dominic pointed out the broken finger may not even be on his shooting hand to begin with.

  • That King’s ping pong segment was funnier than most things on SNL in the last 17 years. It’s good to see that he’s fitting in.

    As far as the playoff push, the things all the commentators on TV miss is that so many of the games are against the people we’re chasing. This is a good thing.

  • Quisp

    Shakes — The other good thing is that most pundits/commentators/etc. have written off the Kings for this year’s playoffs (although I did hear Marc Crawford last night saying the Kings were still alive). Under the radar is good for us.

    Rich — what number is Williams going to wear?

  • Quisp

    Stars, Flames, Coyotes and Ducks lose. The Wild wins (beating Anaheim). A good night for the Kings.

  • yosemite kings fan

    Rich — what number is Williams going to wear?


  • Quisp

    Oh yeah. I did read that somewhere. Thanks.

  • BakoCACondorsKingsFan

    Anybody notice Bernier winning 6 in a row for Manchester?

  • AK47

    Is it just me, or does Richardson have the potential to be a 2nd liner? I mean for example, against Minnesota, why didn’t we just put him on the line with Frolov and Stoll, and he would’ve played just as well as Peter Harrold, if not better. Peter Harrold should be dropped back on D instead of Denis Gauthier. I just feel like Richardson was never really given the chance to play on the 1st or 2nd line.. I feel like he has so much upside to him..

    Just my 2 cents..

    I actually wonder what number Williams will wear? He wore 14 in Philly, so that might be one of his options..

  • AK47


    I wrote about Bernier’s consecutive wins in other posts and so did other people.. We’re all pumped about it, and I jokingly said that we shouldn’t have re-sign Ersberg.. Just a joke..

  • 4thlinechecker

    I think we will need to go 13-4 to get in…… Not impossible, but gonna be tough with our schedule. We will know tomorrow night if the boys are gonna be up to task….. The nucks are looking good again.

    The good thing is even if we dont make it, at least we are playing important games right now, and hopefully for a couple weeks.

  • Dominic Lavoie

    AK47 my guess is Richardson is not “competing” as much as Harrold. The Kings talk a lot about compete levels with players and they really like Harrold’s. Haven’t heard them talk about Richardson that way, though the team likes his talent clearly.

  • DJjazzyJEFF

    AK47….its just you. I have yet to see Richardson as a possession guy, or anyone who can change the angle. He is so one dimensional its not even funny, compound that with the fact that we gave up a second rounder to acquire him.

  • Quisp

    11-5-1 (88 pts) probably isn’t good enough.
    12-5 (89 pts) may do it.
    12-4-1 (90) will probably do it.
    13-4 (91) will almost certainly do it.

    But seriously, look at everyone else’s schedules, and tell me you wouldn’t be just as worried to be a fan of any of those other teams (with the exception of Vancouver, who is probably too far ahead to blow it).

  • KingRu

    This just in!!! Williams just injured himself in a fluke pingpong accident! LOL jk…or am I?

  • Moondoggie

    Hey Quisp….

    Do you seriously think the Kings can make the playoffs? It definitely looks like an uphill battle but like you said, impossible? Not for this team.

    Your thoughts….

  • Chris Bond

    Big Big Game tonight come on guys……

  • nykingfan


    I don’t see Richardson as being a top 6 forward either.
    He’s had some chances with the puck down low and it doesn’t seem like he has much of a scoring touch.
    He’s a really good skater with speed, but I don’t see what else he brings to the table.
    Does anyone know if he was a scorer in Juniors?
    He didn’t do it with Colorado, although he didn’t get much of a chance there.
    I see him being the odd man out after this year. I also don’t see a fit for him on this team now…especially if they are going to use Calder on the 4th line.

  • AK47

    I agree, but Calder won’t be back after the season. We need to start making room for the kids, like Trevor Lewis.. He’s proving his strong play in Manchester and he’ll get a job next season.. Calder and Armstrong will be gone next year, so Trevor Lewis will take one of the spots.. Richardson will probably just play the 3rd or 4th line.. It’s too bad he doesn’t get more playing time.. I really like him and think he has lots of potential..

    How can he not be a fit for this team? We used a 2nd round pick to get him.. Of course he’s a fit for this team, or DL wouldn’t have pulled the deal.

  • BRS

    I was at the practice yesterday and I found myself looking at the crowd wondering if any of the people there are posters on this blog. Was anybody there & where were you sitting standing? I was in the center bleachers with my 14 year old son.

  • number 6

    AK47 said: How can he not be a fit for this team? We used a 2nd round pick to get him.. Of course he’s a fit for this team, or DL wouldn’t have pulled the deal.

    Um, AK. I hate to break it to you, but it would be glorious if that was the way it worked. DT gave up a 2nd to Philly for Cechmanek. I don’t remember what DL gave up for Cloutier. I don’t have to remind you how those worked out. But the morale is that just cause you give up a high pick for someone doesn’t mean it’s gonna work out. Just go back to the George McGuire era of the Kings. According to all of the 1st round picks he gave up we would have won at least one Cup if not more.

    I’m not comparing DL to G McGuire nor am I saying that Brad Richardson doesn’t have potential. But really it’s specious reasoning to say “because of this” we’ll get “that” result.

  • jet

    #6 – It’s Monday morning, did you really have to mention George “Fire” McGuire?

  • Ersberg

    Bako/Ak-comments regarding JB.

    Yeah, JB’s hot right now. I hate to say it, but re-signing Ersberg may have been a bit premature. It is very possible he gets beat out in camp, ulimately resulting in a waste of $1.5mil, unless we think that’s money well spent on a guy on waivers. It’s pretty much inevitable he’s traded/waived, especially after that crappy start against Dallas. As a matter of fact, EE hasn’t looked that good for a long stretch of time this season.

  • Quisp

    Re Richardson –

    My guess is DL acquired Richardson because he didn’t expect Moller and Simmonds to be ready this year. Also, I think he (DL) likes to have his prospects spread out across varying degrees of development. He doesn’t want, for example, all his prospects to be three years away. Some need to be ready now, some in a year, some in a couple of years, some projects, etc.. By trading the 2nd pick, he was taking an asset that wouldn’t be ready for three years and in receiving, in essence, a veteran prospect.

    I’m quite sure there’s a smart board in Lombardi’s office that maps this all out.

  • number 6

    jet said:
    #6 – It’s Monday morning, did you really have to mention George “Fire” MeGuire


    I guess it helps me to get into the week.

  • Quisp

    The Ersberg money won’t be wasted. Signing the extension gives DL the chance to trade Ersberg when Bernier is ready. Otherwise, he would have had to trade him last week or lose him. Anyway, re-signing Ersberg only to have Bernier suddenly become the second coming of Ken Dryden, that’s what you would call a champagne problem.

    Richardson stats:

    Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM
    2004-05 Owen Sound Attack OHL 68 41 56 97 60 8 6 4 10 8
    2005-06 Lowell Lock Monsters AHL 29 4 13 17 20 — — — — —
    2005-06 Colorado Avalanche NHL 41 3 10 13 12 9 1 0 1 6
    2006-07 Colorado Avalanche NHL 73 14 8 22 28 — — — — —
    2006-07 Albany River Rats AHL 3 0 1 1 2 — — — — —
    2007-08 Colorado Avalanche NHL 22 2 3 5 8 — — — — —
    2007-08 Lake Erie Monsters AHL 38 14 26 40 18 — — — — —
    NHL Totals 136 19 21 40 48 9 1 0 1 6

    Re Richardson and next year’s line-up:

    I think there will be a top six signing. But let’s pretend I don’t think that. Here’s what you’ve got:

    [F13], [F14]

    Ivanans, Westgarth, Richardson, Zeiler, Boyle, Cliche, Moulson, Wudrick, Azevedo, Loktionov and Clune (to pick my idea of the front-runners) will compete for four spots.

    One of Ivanans or Westgarth will make it.
    One of Zeiler or Clune might. But not both.
    One of Azevedo or Loktionov might.
    Boyle, Azevedo and Loktionov are centers. Boyle is only a center, so it’s either fourth line center for him or bust.
    Wudrick, when ready (this fall? probably not, but see Moller/Simmonds) would be great with Simmonds and a perfect-world-non-sucky version of Boyle.
    Lewis, who is a natural center, could center Simmonds and someone on the fourth line.

    If DL signs a Hossa-like guy this summer (for example, Hossa), then Williams moves down to the second line. Ideally, it would be good to have a stopper line and a speed line (a la Donnelly/Millen in the early 90s; who was the other forward on that line?). Moller, Loktionov, Azevedo, Richardson, Stoll, and — for that matter — Williams, all could thrive in that role. That’s four centers, but what the [heck].

    It will be interesting.

  • AK47

    Brad Richardson will be an important asset for this team next year. He’s a very good player and his stats actually prove it.. Someone asked if he was a big scorer in the juniors..

    I know this doesn’t seem much, but in the 2004-2005 season, Brad Richardson put up 41 goals and 56 assists in 68 games for the Owen Sound Attack of the OHL.. Once again, I’m not saying he’s going to be the next Gretzky, but the kid has potential.. He’s only 24 years old, and Colorado traded him because they had no room for him. His original position is center too, so it’s probably a tough adjustment for him, don’t know though..

    All I’m saying is, Brad Richardson will not be the odd man out next year, I think he’ll be playing the 3rd or 4th line..

    Whatever happened to Brady Murray?

    Kind of off topic, but I really hope we draft Jordan Schroeder.. He’ll be the perfect fit for this team, or even Nazim Kadri (lebanese player)..

  • Ersberg


    $1.5mil for 7th round pick? Sorry, had to.

    I get EE’s a bridge, but we already have bridge goalies, in that our youngsters could hardly do any worse.

  • Quisp

    Ersberg re Ersberg:

    First of all, it remains to be seen if Ersberg will be dealt (I think he will, but someone is going to get dealt eventually: too many goalies), if Bernier will make the team this fall, if Quick will stay “quick,” etc.. If EE gets dealt, who knows what the market will be for him. Better than a 7th I hope. But it won’t be better than that if he’s traded when he’s playing like crap, a la JLB.

    But think of it as an insurance policy. You hope the premium you pay all those years is a waste of money, since the insurance is there in case of a crisis or catastrophe.

    I would be ecstatic if Bernier reached his potential next season. If that happens, it’ll be a very good year.

  • AK47

    Quisp, I somewhat agree with your lineup, but not completely..

    Frolov-Kopitar-Williams (Gaborik/Hossa/Havlat)
    Callahan (Williams)-Moller-Brown

    That’s the lineup I would be hoping for next year.. Solid players all around, and Richardson and Lewis will be in and out with Ivanans or Westgarth.. You guys feel me? And I just have this feeling that DL is going to pull off a Kevin Lowe and go after Ryan Callahan.. We need size at the wings, and I think he would be a nice pick up.. I watched him play yesterday on the 3rd line, and I said to myself that this kid can easily be on our 2nd line..

    If DL goes after a guy like Callahan, I don’t expect us to get a huge UFA, like Gaborik or Hossa.. I still think we’re going to go after Komisarek..

    Quisp, I don’t see Dustin on the 3rd line.. He’s a natural born scorer and will give us 30 goals a year.. Do you think he’ll be able to put up those numbers on the 3rd line? And you really think Handzus is a 2nd line center? Last year we put Handzus as the 2nd line center and you saw how he played.. It was too much for him.. He’s a 3rd line center or 4th.. And I’m not taking anything away from Handzus, he’s a very good player, very skilled, but he’s not a 2nd line center..

    Why is Jack Johnson on the 3rd D pairing with Denis Gauthier? That angers me so much.. He should be paired with Drew Doughty or Kyle Quincey, not Denis Gauthier, ughhhh..

  • src

    Interesting lineups gents. Here is my wish list if anyone gives a hoot.

    Franzen (4mil)-Zeus-Simmonds
    Lewis-Rich-Neil(2 mil)

    If DL signs a Gabby etc, that means the end of the Fro era. If Fro is going to settle for 5 mil over 4 years he will stay. If he goes after 6 mil, then he will be dealt and DL will go after a big gun. With my suggestions we increase our payroll by approx 6 mil. Minus calder, army gives us a net +2 mil. RFA are too expensive in the form of draft picks. I also like Callahan, but at what price?? Komisarek would be great, but he will cost 4+/year. Yes we can afford him, but will he come to LA?

    My above lineup suggestion leaves out Purcell………Think he has played well the last 2 games, but do not see him beating out Moller. Would you rather have purcell or Franzen? Franzen would be a monster and give us that presence in front of the net. Simmonds would get alot of garbage goals. Purcell is a perimeter player. Moller is constantly getting his nose dirty-just love that kid. Definate top 6 forward.

  • Quisp

    AK47, re 2009 lineup –

    Some thoughts:

    (1) Lines: the lines are totally fluid; it’s futile to do anything other than to pencil in what you think might maybe-maybe happen in October. I threw those lines together to get a general sense of who’s locked down a spot, who’s got a spot to lose, and who’s fighting for a spot.

    (2) Line “numbers.” You can put whatever number on Dustin Brown’s line you want. Call it the second line, and call Handzus the third line. It doesn’t really matter. The point is, there are three RWs, Williams, Brown and Simmonds. On the depth chart, Simmonds would be #3. Does that mean he plays on the third line? No. Is Brown #1 on our depth chart? (I would say Williams is). Obviously we will see Kopitar and Brown together at least some-time. Does that make Brown the #1 RW, if he’s skating with Kopitar? No. Is Williams the #3 RW if he’s on a line with Handzus, or Moller? No. This season we have an ill-defined and rarely used fourth line. Don’t be surprised to see more of a Detroit type line-up next year. Kopitar line (finesse, puck possession); Brown line (hitting, secondary scoring); Handzus line (stopper, with offensive upside); line of terrifying speed and finish (Moller, Loktionov, or similar).

    (3) Havlat would be a very expensive signing and he’s not a 50-goal-scorer. We would close to the cap ceiling with, essentially, Joseph Stumpel on the wing of the first line. No thanks.

    (4) Gaborik. Again, I think you have to remember that whichever big UFA gets brought in, he has to fit the bill “last piece of the puzzle” because there isn’t going to be any more cap room after that signing. Gaborik doesn’t fit the bill. Hossa does, though.

    (5) Callahan is an RFA. DL is the enemy of RFA signings. He would never do this.

    (6) Komisarek? Well, you’ve got Doughty, Johnson, Quincey, Greene, SOD, Harrold, and then (fighting for the seventh spot, or sixth and seventh spot if someone can outplay Harrold) Voynov, Drewiske, Hickey, Teubert, Campbell, Martinez and Kidd. DL will have cap issues sooner rather than later if he signs a UFA defenseman. I am sure he knows this better than anyone and accordingly will not sign any more D. That’s why he got SOD for cheap. I expect Voynov or Hickey to make the team anyway.

    (6) Lewis — I don’t think Lewis is going to be a healthy scratch in favor of an enforcer. I think he will make the team more solidly than that. Someone else will sit when the enforcer is necessary. Which brings me to:

    (7) Richardson and everyone else fighting for those last four (three if there’s a signing) spots. You’ve got Ivanans, Westgarth, Richardson, Zeiler, Boyle, Cliche, Moulson, Wudrick, Azevedo, Loktionov and Clune. Give one of those roster spots to Ivanans/Westgarth. Three left. Clune and Cliche were born to play on a fourth and third line, respectively. You’ve got Boyle, fighting for his life, and Moulson, who may be odd man out, but he’s got much more skill than Richardson, so I don’t think you can say Richardson will make it over Moulson. Then you’ve got Azevedo and Loktionov, who are both small and speedy, like Richardson, and are primed to have great camps. I wouldn’t want to put money on Richardson being the one to win that head-to-head battle. We will see, of course. But I think there are several reasons to doubt whether Richardson will be on the roster in the fall.

    Keep in mind that one of the reasons Richardson is with the Kings and Lewis (or Moulson, for that matter) is in Manchester is that Richardson is not waiver-exempt. He’s stuck here.

  • AK47

    I would also LOVEEE to have Franzen, and he’d for sure play on the first line with Frolov and Kopitar..


    but SRC, you bring out good points, actually very good points. If we after a guy like Gaborik, we’ll most likely keep Frolov for another year, unless DL really wants to keep both Gaborik and Frolov (which is also possible).. I understand going after Callahan will cost lots of money, but he might be that missing piece. There are lots of RFA this summer, and it’s possible that we will go after one of them, and the reason for this is all the cap space we have.. David Booth is a RFA, Travis Zajac, Phil Kessel, Brandon Dubinsky..

  • Quisp

    src –

    Your line-up has cap issues. Kings will be at $48MM after they sign Johnson and Purcell (who, p.s., they’re not letting go of — Purcell and Moller are the reason DL traded POS). If you add $6MM, you’re at $54MM, which is way too close to the cap ceiling (which may come down) not to end up with a big sniper (e.g. Hossa). In any case, if you make those moves, you would not be able to add a UFA on d. No cap space.

  • Quisp

    But Dean Lombardi is not going to sign an RFA to an offer sheet. Look up his comments re offer sheets from last summer when people were worried about an offer sheet for POS. He was, if memory serves, quite Don Corleone about it.

  • AK47

    hahaha Yes he was.. He said that if anyone were to sign O’Sullivan to an offer sheet, not only will he match the offer, he will go after their restricted free agents.. hahaha

  • Ersberg



    I wouldn’t expect to see more than 1-2 to additions up front next season, since Dean likes to keep his cap amounts low. We’ll most likely see what we’re already seeing in a guy like Williams. I.e. Franzen, Filp, etc.

    Don’t expect to see guys like Gaborik or Havlat here; they cost way too much cash. I believe Gaborik is currently sitting at $7.250mil, which is an absolutely ridiculous amount of money.

    By the way..

    I’d easily let go of one of our d-men if we could get a guy like Komisarek here, but I’m betting he’ll stay with the Habs.

  • src

    correct me if I am wrong, but with the subtraction of Goat, Calder, Army and half og Preissings salary (waive him)-this should cover JJ, Fro, purcell. We are then at the same cap # we have now????

    The addition of Franzen or comparable should be attainable. I do not see DL paying big bucks for a gunner. And as noted there are plenty of kids to choose from on the back line.

  • nykingfan

    Do you really believe that Simmonds would be dropped to the 4th line next year?
    I would be completely shocked. Both he and Zeus have combined to form 2/3 of the best checking line in the NHL. I might be exaggerating a bit but based on his play this year, it would be a travesty to have him getting 4th line minutes. the same way that the plans don’t call for Oscar Moller to be a 4th line guy next year.
    Obviously things could change depending on changes made to the team, but these 2 guys have earned their playing time in the NHL…especially Simmonds.

    I just don’t see what Richardson’s value would be as a 4th line player. He’s not physical….He doesn’t score (while playing with 4th line guys)and from what I’ve seen this year, he’s not better than Moller or Simmonds.
    For arguments sake…if you keep Richardson, which young kid is not going to be on the roster next year? I assume we will be signing at least 1 big free agent this off-season. That’s one less spot for Richardson.

  • JT Snow

    Any particular reason why you give no love to Purcell yet Richardson and Lewis appear to have unconditional love from you.
    From an offensive standpoint, neither are close to Purcell and this will become more apparent as Purcell fills out more. He was afterall a late bloomer, literally and figuratively.
    Purcell this season according to the coaching staff has become more well rounded, so what gives?

  • AK47

    I love Teddy Purcell.. I just don’t know what the kid is up to.. He’s inconsistent, but hopefully he’ll prove me wrong.. Let’s get this straight, I absolutely LOVE every player on this team except Kyle Calder and Denis Gauthier.. So JT Snow, don’t feel insulted if i don’t mention Purcell or Moller or Simmonds, I really like those kids.

  • Quisp

    NYKingfan re Simmonds:

    I love Simmonds. I guess the reason would be that I don’t see the fourth line being a dumping ground, which is obviously what happened to it this year. The other reason is that there is a log-jam at right wing and at center. Simmonds is either going to be on the 3rd or 4th unit, behind Brown and Williams, and (because I am sure there will be moments when he’s in the top six) then we’ll be having the WHY IS BROWN/WILLIAMS ON THE THIRD LINE conversation.

    Stoll and Handzus will not be here after a couple of years, and the kids will fill in from below. Until then, there’s going to be a lot of conversations about why this or that player is toiling on the fourth line.

    Frankly, I would just put Simmonds and Moller and Purcell in the top six and let Brown and Handzus pull up the rear, but then there would be a bunch of comments about WHYYYYYYYY!???? How can you say Brown is a third liner? Wait, I think there was one of those today already.

    Too many good players. What a problem to have.

  • nykingfan

    Yeah…tough problem to have.
    if we reach that point, you know we’ll be battling for the cup, not just the playoffs. It’s not far off.

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