In advance of the Kings and Golden Knights hooking up at Staples Center later tonight, let’s take a lap around the LA locker room with another edition of Random Ramblings. This time, we’re checking in with Adrian Kempe, Carl Grundstrom, and Cal Petersen.
Adrian Kempe on the pride he takes in his versatility and ability to succeed at different forward positions
I’m happy if I can help on any line I play on. We’ve had some guys out and someone needs to fill their spot. I think it’s a good thing that I can play both right and left, and have good success there, as well. That’s a good thing. I’m just trying to play my game, whatever line I’m on and whoever I’m playing with, and adjust from there.
On what he can do to help prevent some of the odd-man rushes Vegas likes to create
Definitely in the o-zone, we want to activate our D as much as possible and it’s our responsibility as forwards to cover for them. I think the last couple games against Vegas, we didn’t do a good job, especially early in the game. We figured it out later. They want to come as hard as possible. If we can keep pucks alive in the o-zone and make sure we pinch when we have a good chance, we need the forwards to cover, for sure. That’s something we have to be better at, especially going into tonight’s game.
On what he wants to see the Kings accomplish in the early part of tonight’s game
Starts have been really important the last couple of games for us. The last game against St. Louis, we had a really good start. We got pucks deep, the forecheck was really good, and we didn’t really give them a lot to play with. We had good line changes and every line was buzzing. That’s the kind of the momentum we need to get from tonight’s game, as well. We know Vegas is good. They’ve always been a good team. We have to be ready right from the start and eliminate their odd-man rushes that they showed the last couple games we played them.
On if he watches more or less hockey this season with all the restrictions on outside life
Usually, I don’t watch a lot of hockey. So I’d say I’ve watched more hockey this year than I’ve done before. I don’t know what other guys have done before, but I usually don’t watch a lot of games other than our own.
On if he’s checking the standings more this season with the Kings now in a fight for the playoffs
For sure. I think you check the scores probably every night to see how the other teams are doing. Our division is really tight and we’re still in it. Every game is gonna be really important. That’s also what’s fun about hockey, when there’s something on the line every game you play. Especially now, we have half a season left and every game is gonna be really important. It’s gonna be a lot of fun. I think all the guys are excited to push for the rest of the season.
Carl Grundstrom on what makes his line with Jaret Anderson-Dolan and Trevor Moore work so well
All three of us want to play fast. We think the same and we hit it off good. I am enjoying playing with those two, for sure.
On if he was surprised at how quickly their line came back together after the injury to Anderson-Dolan
Yeah. JAD was playing really well from the start, that’s impressive for being away for that long. Usually, it takes a couple of games to get back where we were before, but he was ready to go right away.
On if their line is better than the sum of its parts
We played really well together, how we played before JAD got hurt, as well. We just tried to keep building from that, what we had before, and just keep going.
On if he has a handle on the speed and size of the NHL game now
Yeah, I think so. I feel way more comfortable out there now. I’ll try to keep building from where we are right now.
On if the coaching staff talked to their line before the last game about an increase in minutes
No, not really. They just played us a lot, that was fun.
On what he has to do with his game to find success against Vegas
They play really fast, so we can’t give them anything for free. They have a couple really good forwards who can score for them. We have to play a good structure and get in on the forecheck, create chances that way. We have to play a really good, structured game against the Golden Knights.
Cal Petersen on earning his first career point on Wednesday
I had a few in college; I don’t know how many I have in the AHL. It’s kind of funny, it’s usually the ones that you don’t really mean to get an assist on, they end up counting. I was just happy it worked out, more so relieved when the puck went in the net. It was exciting. Kopi’s a pretty good guy to give the puck to, you can get a lot of points that way.
On the difference between last year’s Kings team and this year’s team
It starts with our vets, they’re having success. They’re pushing the pace during the drink with this team. We have a lot of young guys, including myself, that are hungry to have a foothold in the league, have a permanent spot, and really make a difference on this team. It’s a good combination in that regard. Great opportunities all around for guys to have success. We’re happy to be in the mix here and hopefully our best hockey is yet to come.
On if he has any input into the creating the team’s goaltending schedule
No. I walk into the rink and see my number circled and that’s when I know that I’m starting either the next day or that morning. The good thing is, the coaching staff has confidence in all of us. Whoever is gonna get in the net is gonna put together a really good game. For me, whenever my number is called, I’m ready to go. You have to be able to play every team in the league, so I don’t think much changes.
On if he looks at stats and analytics, or fundamentals
It’s more the wins, right? That’s the most important part. There’s a level of pride that comes with playing well and having success, the stats come along with that. At the end of the day, it’s about making a save that wins the game for the team. If the stats play out in my favor at the end of that, then it’s great. The wins part and getting into the playoffs, that’s the biggest thing.
On how open of an opportunity it would take for him to try and score a goal
It would have to be when the stars aligned and the right time in the game, a big comfortable lead, to go for it. With each game in the shortened season being so important, it’s one of those things I just wouldn’t want to put the team in jeopardy. The stars would have to align with that one, and even then, I’d have to get pretty lucky. I don’t know if you’re gonna see me going for any goals here soon.
Note to webmasters/reporters: When recapping news or interviews from this site please remember to include a link to www.MayorsManor.com