Practice report: Willie Mitchell sits, Simon Gagne feels better, Jeff Carter surfs

Wednesday’s practice report …

Kings coach Darryl Sutter said defenseman Willie Mitchell continues his recovery from offseason knee surgery despite sitting out practice for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday. Mitchell hasn’t suffered a setback, according to Sutter, but has been doing off-ice workouts to improve his fitness.

“No, not really,” Sutter said when asked if Mitchell had a setback that’s kept him off the ice. “He’s just trying to keep it wrapped up. We’re doing as much off-ice (workouts) right now to get his fitness where it can be and, hopefully, he can jump back into practice. But there hasn’t been a setback.”

Simon Gagne, a left wing, said he feels like his old self again after he underwent offseason surgery to remove a growth in his neck. He said he noticed right away he slept better and was more well-rested the next morning. He couldn’t say whether it’s helped his game, but it sure hasn’t hurt it.

“It was two weeks where I tried to not do too much,” Gagne said of the surgery, which followed a concussion that sidelined him for most of the regular season and the playoffs. “Right after surgery, not having that thing in my neck, the first thing I noticed the way I was sleeping was better.”

Jeff Carter, a forward, revealed with a wry smile that he tried a new workout routine during the lockout. He said he tried surfing for the first time in his life, heading to the waves near the Hermosa Beach Pier for a radically different kind of exercise.

“Just went down to the Hermosa Pier and rented some boards,” Carter said. “I had no idea of what I was doing. We tried, though. No, no (it was impossible to stand up and actually surf the waves). It was fun, though.”


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