Game 2 of a two-game set has been the Kings specialty most of this season. So perhaps tonight will bring them a better outcome than Friday’s 5-2 loss to the Sharks.
Coach Todd McLellan opted to have his team skip a morning skate today, as he often does in back-to-back situations. This is helpful to the players, yet not so much for lineup projections.
The goaltending equation is probably the easiest to solve, as McLellan hasn’t deviated much from his 50/50. With Cal Petersen starting last night, that should lead to Jonathan Quick in net tonight.
On defense, like in Game 1, this is where McLellan has a myriad of options – where four players (MacDermid, Maatta, Clauge, Wolanin) are available for three spots.
Over the past few hours, MayorsManor has learned the Kings will not hold Iafallo out of the lineup tonight. He’s expected to play vs. the Sharks in San Jose.
In one sense, it’s really too bad they aren’t resting him. Not as protection against injury in advance of a potential trade, though. More because it could have given Gabe Vilardi a chance to get back into the lineup in a rather ideal situation. Creating a Brown – Kopitar – Vilardi line could have been the best option for Vilardi. If he’s not playing on Kopitar’s wing… and he’s not getting a spot on the JAD line… and it’s probably best to keep him off the Carter line… the only other option would be to put him on the fourth line. Does it really advance his development playing small minutes on the fourth line?
projected just a guess lineup vs. San Jose Sharks
Iafallo – Kopitar – Brown
Athanasiou – Lizotte – Carter
Grundstrom – JAD – Moore
Lemieux – Kempe – Wagner
Anderson – Doughty
Wolanin – Walker
Maatta – Clague
Other players available:
Toby Bjornfot (won’t play in San Jose)
Matt Roy (protocol)
The taxi squad is currently comprised of Austin Strand, Lias Andersson, Matt Luff, Drake Rymsha, and Troy Grosenick.
For a deeper dive into decisions facing the Kings as they head into Monday’s Trade Deadline, see below for a link to our preview, where we discuss the status of every LA roster player and a handful of the team’s top prospects.
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