Even though the games are being played on two entirely different days, just pretend that last night’s game in Phoenix and tonight’s affair in San Jose are actually just a pair of good ol’ fashioned split-squad games.
Kings coach Todd McLellan has previously indicated that the two rosters will look completely different — a luxury at this point in camp, when there are more than 50 players still hanging around (although the pruning sheers are in hand and some work will be done there over the next 48 hours).
As noted yesterday, the expectation is for McLellan to use a more veteran-based lineup tonight. However, if second round pick Francesco Pinelli is getting a game, this is likely his one shot. He’ll be headed back to the OHL soon.
Hopefully by now most people are up to speed with the real competition in camp, it’s between 13 forwards to lay claim to one of the four roster spots available at forward. Last night vs. the Coyotes, a bevy of guys from that baker’s dozen had an opportunity to show off in their auditions – including: Sammy Fagemo, Alex Turcotte, Martin Frk, Brendan Lemieux, Carl Grundstrom, Jaret Anderson-Dolan, Arthur Kaliyev, and Rasmus Kupari.
When filling out the card for tonight’s game, McLellan will most likely be taking a look at the other five candidates up front.
LA KINGS PROJECTED LINEUP vs. SHARKS
Arvidsson – Kopitar – Brown
Tkachev – Vilardi – Iafallo
Wagner – Lizotte – Madden
Pinelli – Byfield – Andersson
Other options: Sodergran and Dudas
Maatta – Doughty
Bjornfot – Spence
Wolanin – Roy
Other options: Clague and Strand
— John Hoven | The Mayor (@mayorNHL) September 27, 2021
Most likely, Garret Sparks will be Quick’s tandem partner tonight. However, McLellan and his staff may be re-thinking it after taking a look at those pads he was sporting on Sunday in Ontario. Jacob Ingham will be waiting in the wings, just in case.
Puck drop is scheduled for 7pm. Unfortunately, just like yesterday, the game in San Jose is not being broadcast by the Kings or Sharks, so there won’t be any place to watch it on/off-line. Enjoy the radio broadcast. Then, starting Thursday in Utah, the Kings five remaining preseason games will all be televised.
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