Dustin Brown versus Canucks

Kings captain Brown (hamstring) skates, ‘highly unlikely’ to start season

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The Los Angeles Kings welcomed a familiar face to the ice on Monday — captain Dustin Brown, who skated for the first time since injuring his hamstring at the start of training camp.

Brown, 28, has missed all four of Los Angeles’ preseason games and seems unlikely to be ready for tomorrow night’s game against the Ducks.

Looking ahead, it’s possible he could make his return for the Kings’ Frozen Fury event — games at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Fri, Sept. 27 (vs. the Rangers) or Sat, Sept. 28 (vs. the Avalanche) — though those are also questionable, given he hasn’t returned to full practice yet.

One of the team’s most durable players, Brown will very likely be ready to start the regular season. He’s appeared in 610 of a possible 622 games since 2005-06, appearing in all 82 contests for three straight seasons from 2009-12.

The 2013-14 campaign also marks the last of Brown’s six-year, $19.05 million deal. His extension — a much richer eight-year, $47 million contract — kicks in for the 2014-15 campaign.


Following the skate, Kings head coach Darryl Sutter downplayed the possibility of Brown being ready for Los Angeles’ season opener on Oct. 3:


Report: Torres won’t appeal 41-game suspension

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Sounds like Raffi Torres is accepting his punishment.

Per Sportsnet, Torres won’t appeal his 41-game suspension for an illegal hit to the head of Anaheim’s Jakob Silfverberg.

The report comes just days after the NHL’s Department of Player Safety levied one of the longest disciplinary rulings in league history, citing both the severity of the Silfverberg hit and Torres’ lengthy history of suspensions, fines and warnings.

There was some thought, however, that Torres would try to challenge the ruling.


He does have a history of success in that department. In 2012,Torres successfully appealed his suspension for a headshot on Chicago’s Marian Hossa, and had his punishment reduced from 25 games to 21.

Torres also isn’t considered a “repeat offender” under the current collective bargaining agreement, as his last suspension came in 2013.

Of course, part of that clean record is due to the fact he hasn’t played much. Torres has largely been sidelined by injury for the last two seasons, missing all of last year with knee problems.

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman delved further into the repeat offender thing in his latest 30 Thoughts column:

If you read the relevant sections of the CBA, the league takes the position that the repeat offender status is only applicable to fines. Repeaters are fined on a per-game basis, non-repeaters on a per-day basis. (The former is more expensive, because there are fewer games than days in an NHL season.) However, if you go to Section 18.2, among the factors taken into account are, “the status of the offender and, specifically, whether the Player has a history of being subject to Supplementary Discipline for On-Ice Conduct.”

So, in the NHL’s view, a player’s history is relevant, even if longer than 18 months ago.

Should the report prove accurate and Torres doesn’t appeal, he will be eligible to return to action on Jan. 14, when the Sharks take on the Oilers.

Report: Kings, Richards nearing settlement

Mike Richards
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The Los Angeles Kings and Mike Richards may be nearing a settlement in their dispute over Richards’ terminated contract, TSN’s Bob McKenzie is reporting.

You can read the report for all the details, but we’re sure curious about this part:

If a settlement is reached, there’s no word yet on what salary cap penalties the Kings would still face. There’s bound to be something, but not likely as onerous as the full value of Richards’ contract, which carries with it a cap hit of $5.75 million. If there’s a settlement, Richards would undoubtedly become a free agent though there’s no telling at this point what monies he would be entitled to from the Kings in a settlement.

The issue here is precedent, and what this case could set. The NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door, and many are adamant that that’s what the Kings were attempting to do in Richards’ case.