Drew Doughty offers Willie Mitchell No. 8, gains his admiration

drewdoughtyno8.jpgThe Los Angeles Kings didn’t land the big fish (Ilya Kovalchuk) this summer, but they might be better off if Willie Mitchell can actually stay healthy this season.

Mitchell admitted that one of the most significant draws (besides the sexy weather, I’m guessing) was the possibility of playing alongside – or at least on the same blueline with – Kings stud defenseman Drew Doughty. The experienced defenseman knew Doughty was super-skilled, but he found out quickly that he knows how to make a great first impression too.

Here’s more from Helene Elliott.

“I wore No. 8 in Vancouver. The first day he came in he was like, ‘Willie you can take my number,’ and I think that just speaks volumes of him as a kid,” Mitchell said.

He declined Doughty’s generous offer. “I said, ‘No, you had too good of a year last year. You’ve got to keep rocking that thing,’ ” Mitchell said, laughing.

“I think that speaks volumes of him. We were on the ice together the other day as a pair. It was fun seeing what he can do, how he reads and feels the game. I look forward to having a chance to play with him.”

That’s a great gesture from Doughty, an often dazzling player who hopefully will gain more exposure next season. Mitchell is a great fit for the team, whether the Kings opt to pair him with another defensive specialist in Rob Scuderi or a young blueliner such as Doughty or Jack Johnson. If Doughty-Mitchell is indeed a primary pairing, they certainly got off on the right foot.

Scroll Down For:

    Nick Jonas, Carly Rae Jepsen add legit star power to 2017 NHL All-Star Game

    WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 03:  Carly Rae Jepsen performs at the the Human Rights Campaign National Dinner at Walter E. Washington Convention Center on October 3, 2015 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Leigh Vogel/Getty Images)
    Getty
    1 Comment

    If you had to describe the non-hockey celebrities who will be on hand for the weekend’s festivities for the 2017 NHL All-Star Game, you’d probably throw around terms like “young” and “surprisingly famous.”

    At least, that’s especially true with the artists who’ve been announced most recently: the league notes that Nick Jonas, Fifth Harmony and Carly Rae Jepsen will be in the mix.

    Apparently John Legend Robin Thicke and John Ondrasik (Five fo Fighting) will be involved in the events, which also include The NHL 100 (which is hosted by Jon Hamm). Goodness, most of us have heard of like, all of them.

    The league ran down how things will shake up:

    Carly Rae Jepsen will open the 2017 Honda NHL® All-Star Game pregame festivities at STAPLES Center on Sunday, Jan. 29 with a performance of the Canadian national anthem followed by Fifth Harmony’s rendition of the U.S. national anthem. Grammy nominated recording artist, Nick Jonas, will command the ice during the second intermission with a live performance. The NHL will honor the 100 Greatest NHL Players in a special pregame ceremony. The 2017 Honda NHL® All-Star Game and the performances will be broadcast live on Sunday, Jan. 29 at 12:30 p.m. PT / 3:30 p.m. ET on NBC in the U.S. and CBC, Sports and TVA Sports in Canada.

    As previously announced, Hamm will host THE NHL100™ presented by GEICO, a star-studded event in which the entire collection of the 100 Greatest NHL Players will be unveiled. Set for Friday, Jan. 27 at 6:30 p.m. PT and billed as the largest gathering ever of hockey legends, THE NHL100 presented by GEICO at Microsoft Theater also will feature appearances from 2017 NHL® All-Star players and famous hockey fans. Legend and Ondrasik will perform and Thicke will lead a special In Memoriam that pays tribute to the late members of the 100 Greatest NHL Players. Tickets to THE NHL100™ presented by GEICO are available at AXS.com.

    Being that those musicians generally fall under the “pop” category, some in the purest sense that it’s used right now, there were some making fun of that selection. This is the Internet, after all, where everything receives mockery. Is there a mockery-proof musician?

    (Radiohead certainly draws Kid Rock ire, for one.)

    These are some pretty good gets by the NHL for such an event, maybe aided by it taking place in Los Angeles.

    The burning question, really, is if this weekend will break the Twitter follower tie between Jepsen and Jonas:

    Maybe they’ll go to a shootout.

    Video: Giordano goes after Komarov following big hit on Gaudreau

    1 Comment

    Johnny Gaudreau returned very soon after all of this, so at the moment, it seems like the Calgary Flames dodged a big bullet on Monday night.

    That bullet came in the form of a big hit by Toronto Maple Leafs winger Leo Komarov, a check that did not prompt a penalty, but is inspiring plenty of debate on social media. The Athletic’s James Mirtle puts it well, at least for those of us on the fence: “as with a lot of Komarov hits, it’s in a grey area.”

    Again, the best news is that Gaudreau was able to return (though sometimes issues like these demand a “To be continued”), shocking quite a few.

    There’s some debate about the legality of the hit, but most seem perplexed that Mark Giordano‘s response didn’t prompt fighting majors. Instead, they were merely whistled for roughing.

    You can watch the full sequence in the video above. Here’s a GIF of the fight roughing specifically:

    At the moment, the Leafs hold a commanding 3-0 lead. Maybe the Flames will use that sequence to start a comeback?

    Leafs fall down on the job – in a good way – on Kadri’s 100th goal (Video)

    Leave a comment

    You know how athletes – hockey players in particular – have a tendency to shrug off their own accomplishments and spread the praise to their teammates? Nazem Kadri would be justified in doing that “Aww shucks” routine regarding his 100th goal.

    Just bask in the effort exhibited by his teammates in setting up what was a very nice finish by Kadri for that milestone marker, which you can see in the video above.

    Leafs Nation’s Jeff Veillette did a nice job describing the efforts of Auston Matthews and William Nylander

    Pretty much.

    Now get your click’s worth with one other entertaining clip from the game, via Mitch Marner:

    WATCH LIVE: San Jose Sharks at Colorado Avalanche

    SAN JOSE, CA - JANUARY 21:  Joel Ward #42 of the San Jose Sharks skates after John Mitchell #7 of the Colorado Avalanche at SAP Center on January 21, 2017 in San Jose, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
    Getty
    Leave a comment

    The Colorado Avalanche enjoy another appearance on NBCSN after last week’s frustrating performance – that still had some flashes of brilliance – against the Chicago Blackhawks.

    This time around, they’ll face the San Jose Sharks, a team that beat the Avalanche 3-2 in overtime on Saturday.

    While the Avs are struggling merely to avoid being the worst team in the NHL, they do have some players to watch, at least if you’re a fan hoping to see your team add a piece at the trade deadline. (There’s no guarantee the Avs will move either one of Matt Duchene or Gabriel Landeskog in-season, but some fans will still daydream.)

    Now, Duchene’s out sick tonight, but the Avs still have some interesting guys to follow. That includes goalie Spencer Martin, who’s set to play the first two games of his NHL career against the Sharks. Weird, right?

    From San Jose’s perspective, they’re looking to win their fifth game in a row. And, perhaps, take a look at what Colorado has to offer in the rentals aisle?

    Watch the game on NBCSN, online or via the NBC Sports App.

    Click here for the livestream link.