Kings defenseman Drew Doughty scouts the New Jersey Devils

Kings defenseman Drew Doughty wasn’t exactly looking forward to facing the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night at Staples Center. At the same time, he was looking forward to the challenge of playing against them.

“It’s going to be a tough team to play against,” he said. “They play a great system. They work hard. They forecheck hard. They’re one of the toughest teams to play against in the East, in my opinion. They’re a very similar style to us. It’s just whoever is the hardest-working team and who competes hardest is going to be the team that wins.”

Of facing 41-year-old Jaromir Jagr, Doughty said, “He’s such a good player. Last game (a 2-0 win for the Kings on Nov. 15 in Newark), there were a few times guys yelled, ‘Hit him, hit him.’ To me, he’s so strong. There’s not a single guy on this team that’s stronger than him on his skates. He’s protects the puck so well, you almost have to go stick on puck. He’s however old he is and he’s still playing unbelievable. That just goes to show you how good of a player he is and how smart he is.”

Of playing against goalie Martin Brodeur, Doughty said, “Marty’s a great player. He was my favorite player after (Wayne) Gretzky retired, which is weird to be honest because he’s a goalie. But he’s been one of the best goalies in the league pretty much since he got into the league.”

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