Sometimes the headline tells the whole story, sometimes it doesn’t. This is one time when it does. Tyler Toffoli wasn’t producing, so the Kings sent the 21-year-old forward to their minor-league affiliate at Manchester, N.H. Toffoli had 17 points (nine goals, eight assists) in 33 games for the Kings this season. But he also has an 11-game drought without a goal and he scored only once in his last 16 contests. He was the face of the Kings’ recent scoring woes. They haven’t had a goal from a third- or fourth-line player in about a month. They have scored only one goal in each of their last two games, a win over Vancouver and a loss to Detroit.
Here’s the second part of a group question-and-answer session with Kings goalie coach Bill Ranford:
Question: How’s he (Martin Jones) doing it? Who is this guy and how’s he doing it?
Ranford: “It’s simple. He put the work in. It’s all on him. There’s things over the last couple of years of his development that we’ve asked him to do to get him ready to step into the NHL, and he’s done that. He’s the type of kid I think from the very first day he’s stepped into this building, there was a professionalism about him, the way he approaches his position and his work-ethic and how he’s grown as a goalie down in Manchester and that’s really what it’s all about, developing and putting the work in. That’s on him.”
The Kings re-assigned defenseman Jeff Schultz to their American Hockey League affiliate at Manchester, N.H. Schultz did not play with the Kings, who recalled him last week. He has played in 23 games for the Monarchs this season, scoring two points (one goal, one assist). The move clears the way for Matt Greene’s return from injured reserve. Greene has been sidelined by an upper-body injury.
Injuries to forwards Jeff Carter (foot), Kyle Clifford (concussion) and Jarret Stoll (upper body) left the Kings will no choice but to recall Tanner Pearson, Tyler Toffoli and Linden Vey from their American Hockey League affiliate at Manchester (N.H.). The three rookies have made their impact in recent games, but some have been more impactful than others, according to Kings coach Darryl Sutter.
Scott Sabourin made quite an impression on the Kings during training camp. He was aggressive and effective during limited action during exhibition games and the Kings rewarded him Monday with a three-year entry-level contract. The 21-year-old Sabourin had one goal and seven penalty minutes in two exhibitions. He will likely play this season with the Manchester (N.H.) Monarchs of the American Hockey League. But a promotion isn’t out of the question at some point in 2013-14. He had 50 points and 142 penalty minutes last season with the junior-level Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League. He later jointed the Monarchs for the final five regular-season games plus three playoff contests.
So, it turns out Tanner Pearson, Linden Vey and Tyler Toffoli will play together again this season. The Kings loaned them to Manchester (N.H.) of the American Hockey League on Sunday. Those three formed the Monarchs’ top line last season, before Toffoli was recalled by the Kings late in the lockout-shortened NHL season. They played together at times during training camp with the Kings and in exhibitions. But there was simply no room for them on the Kings’ roster, which had to be trimmed to 23 by Monday.
The Kings loaned defenseman Andrew Bodnarchuk to the Manchester (N.H.) Monarchs of the American Hockey League on Friday, trimming their roster to 28 before playing their final two exhibition games in Las Vegas. The Kings face the New York Rangers on Friday and the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. They open the season for real on Thursday against the Minnesota Wild at St. Paul, Minn.
The Kings added depth to their goaltending corps Tuesday when they agreed to terms with Martin Jones on a two-year deal. Jones had a 27-25-4 record with a 2.53 goals-against average and a .919 save percentage plus five shutouts in 56 games last season with the Manchester (N.H.) Monarchs of the American Hockey League. He was fourth in the AHL in victories, tied for sixth in shutouts and second in saves. He has been with the Monarchs for the last three seasons. He was originally signed by the Kings as a free agent in 2008.
Another day, another move by Kings general manager Dean Lombardi to secure the franchise’s future. Lombardi re-signed minor-league forward Brandon Kozun to a one-season contract Wednesday, one day after coming to terms with defenseman Slava Voynov on a six-year extension worth $25 million. Kozun and Voynov are each 23.