Kings’ Darryl Sutter on Drew Doughty: He has to play better in his own zone

The numbers don’t look good for Kings defenseman Drew Doughty, who’s plus-minus rating is a team-worst minus 10 after 11 games of the season. Doughty also has four assists and isn’t the Kings’ leading scorer among their bruised and battered defense corps. Slava Voynov has two goals and four assists and is a plus seven.

So, what’s wrong with Doughty? Everything. Nothing.

So said Kings coach Darryl Sutter after Wednesday’s practice.

“He has to clearly play better in his own zone,” Sutter said. “That’s not really a surprise. When the team has only given up three or four more goals in terms of for and against and you have three or four players that are significantly off … that’s not a team issue.

“He’s a young defenseman, so what’s changed, right? He’s got a lot to learn. It’s no different from the rest of them. Our oldest defenseman is (Rob) Scuderi, who’s supposed to be a really good defensive player. And the next oldest is (Davis) Drewiske, who’s 28, and learning how to play. And the rest are all kids. Don’t single Drew Doughty out. He’s a young player. He’s got a lot to learn. He’s been put in a new situation this year than he has been at any other point in his career.”

The defending Stanley Cup champion Kings are 4-5-2 to start the lockout-shortened season. They are playing without veteran defensemen Matt Greene (back) and Willie Mitchell (knee), and lost Alec Martinez because of an upper-body injury. Sutter said Martinez, who was injured Monday, would be sidelined for at least one week.

 

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  • Cathy

    Stop making excuses for Doughty. He thinks he is worth $7mil/yr he needs to play like it. I think he is worthless and the Kings need to dump the deadbeat.

    • USHA#17

      Somewhat extreme reaction. With the injuries he’s playing in too many situations, too many minutes. On the salary, would love to see some money kicked but /s/s

      If he stays in condition he will be a great mainstay for years to come.

      • Cathy

        Please, I have been watching hockey for 40 years and Doughty doesn’t come close to the elite D. Again excuses. I see players all the time that play more because of injuries and get the job done. Too many people have put him on such a pedalstool and he obviously believes his own hype. Time to put up or get off the ice.

        • USHA#17

          I sense you may be right about the hype and still in the process of maturing. Can we also agree that his defensive partners have run very cold so far and that King forwards did not start rotating properly until sometime around game 6?

          40 years…if in LA you’ve seen Duschene, Murphy and Sargent. I feel Doughty is developing along the same lines.

          In my defense I offer that last year Ken Hitchcock felt “…the best so far in the series is Kings defenseman Drew Doughty..”