Sutter says Matt Greene might not crack Kings lineup when he returns

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Matt Greene was an integral part to the Kings winning the Stanley Cup last season, but if he wants to help the team repeat as winners, he’s got to show his coach he can play.

Darryl Sutter tells Jon Rosen of L.A. Kings Insider that he likes the way his lineup is playing and Greene won’t just be given a spot in the defense’s top six when he gets healthy because of what he’s done.

“Well, first off, he’s got to get cleared. He doesn’t have one second of contact, so that’s not even close. And, quite honest, if he’s not ready to play three or four games, and if we made the playoffs, I’d have trouble putting him in for sure. He played, what, a few minutes of the year. So it’s not about ‘what you did’. It’s ‘what you’re doing’. It’s very simple. I mean, he’s going to have to play three or four games, very simple, otherwise I could not be comfortable with it.”

See, it’s simple you guys.

With the way the Kings’ defense is playing now it makes all the sense in the world to not go and mess things up. Jake Muzzin is having a career-year even in a short season, and acquisitions Keaton Ellerby and Robyn Regehr have fit in well.

Hey, maybe if the Kings do make the playoffs and go to the Cup finals again, Greene can pull a Simon Gagne and sneak into the lineup anyhow. I might be getting a bit ahead of things there.