Lombardi on Quick, Doughty, Kopitar – ‘The training wheels are off’

Doughty Quick Kings NHLMore from Kings GM Dean Lombardi…

On the possibility of adding a more experienced player, ala Robyn Regehr, to the team for next season:

“That’s the one thing about this group; people forget how young they are. But, they’re not young in experience. People put these young guys down because they’re all 27 and younger. They’ve been to the Conference Final three times. That’s all experience is. We’re incredibly fortunate to have that many players 27 or under who have been through those wars. So, in a way, they are veterans. It’s just that they don’t have the mileage usually associated [with that term], which is exciting for us. As far as the Robyn’s, I totally agree – we all know how important those guys were to the process, but there is also a time for what I talked about earlier; there is enormous growth potential in Kopitar, Doughty, Quick, Carter, and Muzzin, and all these kids. They saw how Robyn Regehr conducted himself. Now it’s your turn. And, no doubt, it’s time. Essentially, that’s where we always wanted to get.

“Your best players are your hardest workers and they take over the room. And they have a chance to do that with two Stanley Cups under their belt. They’re still growing as human beings. Deep down, we all know they’re good kids, and they’re not perfect, but I’m expecting big things out of those three and a number of other ones in that room. I’m expecting [Quick, Doughty, and Kopitar] to come back… they’ve never been at the top of our list, in terms of conditioning. I think that’s going to be the first step for these guys, ‘OK, it’s my turn.’ We shouldn’t have to import that anymore. That’s kind of the way we look at this. The training wheels are off. It’s your show.”

For a detailed look at the off-season roster moves being contemplated by the LA Kings, be sure to check out our recent MayorsManor feature story covering more than a dozen players. Plus, the remainder of Lombardi’s comments are linked below.

MORE MUST-READ LOMBARDI CONTENT:

Lombardi’s on Contracts for Justin Williams and Andrej Sekera

Lombardi on the Future of Mike Richards

Lombardi on ‘Gut-Wrenching’ Meeting with Jarret Stoll

Conference Call: Kings GM Dean Lombardi Talks up Jordan Weal

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Comments

  1. Timothy Patcherd says:

    “They’ve never been at the top of the list in terms of conditioning.”

    And why was that OK before just because you had Robyn Regehr? Dean just really makes you shake your head sometimes. Plenty of fans used to say Doughty was fat, that he didn’t go end to end as much, that he wasn’t scoring like he could because of that. But a fat Doughty is still better than 99% of the league so that kind of shut everyone up. Still, it was true! Dean just confirmed it. Not that Doughty was ever “fat,” but he wasn’t in great shape. The extra weight probably did hurt on defense much, because it’s hard to get by dman 1-on-1 regardless of speed, and the extra weight could have even helped in some physical battles, but for offense, for speed rushing up the ice, for endurance to do it every shift, it hurts a lot. And now we know why Drew has never completely fulfilled his potential offensively.

    And Kopi. It was obvious his top speed suffered this year. Didn’t train like he needed to.

    Quick, still inconsistent, still injury prone at times. Better fitness would help, although I think his fitness has been fine from the outside. It’s Kopi, Drew, Richards, and some others where it was obvious they weren’t in premium shape.

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