As Joe speculated yesterday, Drew Doughty is just about guaranteed to be back after suffering from post-concussion syndrome since the Los Angeles Kings played against the Carolina Hurricanes on October 20.
It is believed that Doughty suffered from a concussion thanks to a hit by Erik Cole.
While there was plenty of speculation from various sources, the Kings announced that they activated Doughty today, so it’s probably safe to start him in your fantasy leagues and tune in to see the team play against the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight at 10:30 PM ET.
Here is a little more from the team, which also activated center Scott Parse today. (Note that the team somewhat laughably is referring to the concussion as an “upper body injury.”)
Doughty, 20, suffered an upper-body injury Oct. 20 vs. Carolina and has missed the last six Kings games. He has one point (an assist), six penalty minutes and a plus-2 rating in five games this season. Last season the 6-0, 212-pound native of London, Ontario was a finalist for the Norris Trophy and named a Second-Team NHL All-Star as he recorded 59 points (16-43=59) and 54 penalty minutes in all 82 regular season games. Among NHL defensemen last season he ranked: third in points, tied for second in goals, tied for fifth in assists, tied for second in power-play goals (9), second in power-play points (31), tied for fifth in power-play assists (22) and first in game-winning goals (5).
Parse, 26, suffered a lower-body injury during training camp and has missed all 11 Kings games so far this season. Last season the 5-11, 188-pound native of Portage, Michigan had 24 points (11-13=24) and 22 penalty minutes in 59 regular season games. He was tied for 10th among NHL rookies in goals and tied for second among league freshman (first among forwards) with a plus-13 rating.
We’ll pass along word if Doughty has any late hiccups, but assume that he’ll pay tonight unless otherwise noted.
The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.
Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.
Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.
“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”
Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:
- He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
- Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
- The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.
Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.
Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?
Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.
Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.
Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.
Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).
A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:
Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.
It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.
After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.
Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.