So the Los Angeles Kings finally return to the ice against the Phoenix Coyotes after an 8 day layoff. The Kings are refreshed, healthy and have 2 of their best players returning to the lineup after some injures. What's that you say? Wayne Simmonds' back?
You better believe he's back.
And with all these players in the line-up... what reason is there not to smile?
Looks like someone was working on his tan while he was out.
The Kings are battling for 2nd place in the Pacific, Christmas-cheer is still spreading throughout Los Angeles... what could go horribly, horribly wrong?
Kings 2, Coyotes 3, Justin Williams' Leg 0
Tonight... a visual representation of the 5 stages of being a Kings fan when it comes to injuries suffered to your top line.
So what does one do as a Kings fan in this situation? With the history of the great LAPD line, which never seemed to be able to feature Jason Allison, Ziggy Palffy and Adam Deadmarsh all at the same time due to injuries... Williams' broken leg just seems to be par for the course for Kings fans. I hate to say it... but we are kinda used to stuff like this now. And it really sucks. So what can you do? Just keep battling, I guess.
"No! No! I'm just down on the ground cause I scored. No injury here!"
The Kings made a good effort last night after the shocking injury to Williams. But the young Phoenix Coyotes proved to be the stronger team and despite an 6 on 3 shooting barrage by the Kings to end the game... the Coyotes came out with an important regulation win. The Kings are now 3 points behind the Coyotes in 5th place in Western Conference, but only 4 points from 9th place. You can bandage holes in the Kings line-up with the Corey Elkins' and the Scott Parses' and the Oscar Moller's... but I think that GM Dean Lombardi knows that if Justin Williams is out for the rest of the year (which you have to assume he will be) he's got to make a move for a Top 6 forward if this team is going to stay competitive in the West. The problem is... who's gonna trade with him right now? The only team in the NHL that doesn't have a fighting chance at the playoffs is Carolina. And that's where the Kings got Williams in the first place, so they want another janky forward from them again. It's a shame too... because the mood of this game started off so jovially as Captain Dustin Brown showed off the new Xbox headset he got for Christmas.
Call of Duty FTW!
The game also started off with a ceremony honoring Coyotes captain Shane Doan. And Fox Sports West HD made the decision to have Bob Miller and Jim Fox talk through the entire ceremony. But then they would cut to live shots like this when Miller and Fox are talking about Simmonds' return to the line-up.
"Hey Foxy... you mind keeping it down? Kinda getting honored here."
So just when the Los Angeles Kings thought they had it all figured out... they are back to square one. An incredibly talented team that just seems to be battling injuries constantly. There are any number of players that can slide into Williams' spot on the first line for the time being... based on last night's game Dustin Brown was getting the most time there. The Kings have 8 of their next 10 games against Western Conference teams... so it only gets more interesting from here. And since you know you want to see the injury... here's the videotape: