Manor Projected Lineups: LA Kings at Calgary Flames; Early Update on Kempe


They see me rollin'. They hatin'.
Staff member

Following a rather disappointing result in Edmonton, LA is right back in action Tuesday night, as they’re set to take on the Calgary Flames.

Monday was a tale too familiar with the Kings this season: a good 40 minutes, combined with a poor 20 minutes. Getting a full 60-minute effort tonight is paramount, yet may prove to be rather tough. Not only is it the second game of a back-to-back situation — where LA has struggled mightily this season — they’ll also be without leading point producer Adrian Kempe.

He left last night’s game with around a minute remaining in regulation after falling awkwardly along the boards in the offensive zone. Losing him long-term could prove to be a nightmare and could force the club to rethink how they approach next week’s NHL Trade Deadline.

None of this is the immediate concern of coach Jim Hiller. He somehow needs to put a lineup together to face the Flames this evening.

Cam Talbot is likely to get the nod in net after David Rittich took the loss last night in Edmonton. Talbot has played better of late, but he’s lacked any real consistent play to help find his game again. If he can pull out a victory in Calgary, that would go a long way toward earning additional trust with the coaching staff.

Kempe Dominos Begin to Fall​

From what we’ve been able to gather, Kempe is returning to Los Angeles for further evaluation later this afternoon. Like many of the other injuries suffered by Kings players of late, detailed imaging is required before understanding the extent of the injury and any subsequent timeline for a return. At the very least, he won’t be playing in Calgary. Beyond that, well, it’s not sounding very promising. Let’s wait for the official word, though, before going down that path.

For now, the Kings don’t really need to rush and call up another player. They already have a healthy Alex Turcotte with them in Canada, so look for him to slot in vs. the Flames. With a day off on Wednesday, that will give Kings management time to assess what they want to do next. As we understand things, they’ll wait until after tonight’s Reign game before deciding which player to recall and fly to Vancouver tomorrow.

The Kings are currently at the 23-player roster limit. However, moving Mikey Anderson (or Kempe) to Injured Reserve would free up a roster spot to recall a player like Sammy Fagemo or Akil Thomas from AHL Ontario.

Salary cap-wise, with Viktor Arvidsson on LTIR, they currently have over $3M in available room, so that won’t hinder them from recalling a forward.

What about the lineup tonight?

Assuming the team will hold an optional morning skate with it being the second game of a back-to-back, it will be tough to project the lineup. With Kempe out, we’re assuming Quinton Byfield will rejoin Anze Kopitar to try and give some extra horsepower to the top line. Unfortunately, that leaves Hiller with few options for how to construct his third line. Any combination of Jaret Anderson-Dolan, Alex Turcotte, Arthur Kaliyev, Trevor Lewis, etc. may slot in there. Then again, Hiller has already shown he has no problem throwing a change up or knuckleball, so even moving Dubois to the top line and leaving Byfield at 3C is theoretically on the table, as well.

Defensively, we’re assuming Brandt Clarke will draw in for Jordan Spence. If any of this changes following morning skate, the projection will be updated.

Statistically Speaking

— when the Flames came to LA for their only other matchup with the Kings thus far this season, Byfield (2), Dubois, Moore, and Laferriere powered the home team to a 5-3 victory.

— Against Pacific Division opponents, LA holds a better record, going 8-3-3 compared to Calgary’s 7-6-1 record.

— Both teams have a 6-3-0 mark in the month of February.

— The Flames have been outscored this season in the first period (60-58) and second period (56-52). However, they hold a plus-5 goal differential in the third. Meanwhile the Kings hold plus-15 and plus-12 goal differentials in the first and third periods respectively.

— On paper, this should be a game where the Kings can clean up a bit on special teams. Calgary has the 32nd ranked power play at home (10.8%) and is only 79.7% on the penalty kill at home (79.7%). LA’s penalty kill is 8th in the league on the road (82.5%) and they hold the 5th best road power play (26.1%)

Kings Projected Lineup vs. Flames

Laferriere – Kopitar – Byfield
Moore – Danault – Fiala
Turcotte – Dubois – Kaliyev
JAD – Lizotte – Lewis
(read above for context)

Gavrikov – Doughty
Moverare – Roy
Englund – Clarke

Talbot (starter)

Likely scratches: Spence

Injured: Anderson, Kempe (not on IR)

LTIR: Arvidsson, Copley, Grundstrom

Kings Of The Podcast previewed the three-game swing through Western Canada here:

Key Game Info

Puck drop is set for 6:00 pm Pacific Time and will be televised by Bally Sports.

Across the Ice

Calgary is coming off a 6-3 victory against the Oilers on Saturday.

Here’s how they lined up for that one:

Zary – Kadri – Pospisil
Huberdeau – Sharangovich – Pelletier
Mangiapane – Backlund – Coleman
Hunt – Rooney – Duehr

Hanifin – Tanev
Weegar – Andersson
Kylington – Pachal


In their last 10 games, the Flames are 7-3-0. As the home team, they’re 14-13-1 this season.

On This Day in Kings History

On February 27, 1977, Marcel Dionne scored his 10th career hat trick in a 5-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres. Dionne's three goals placed him third overall in the NHL with 40 goals in 63 games, and Gary Simmons made 32 saves in his first win with the @LAKings.#LAKings #GoKingsGo

— The Kingstorian (@Kingstorian) February 27, 2024


Follow @mayorNHL

Continue reading...