Anticipated Lineups

Anticipated Lineups: The Kings are gearing up for a Monday night faceoff against the San Jose Sharks in a crucial Pacific Division clash.

Following a much-needed and exhilarating win on Saturday night, LA aims to maintain the momentum and return to their winning form.

Despite already securing two victories against the Sharks this season with a combined score of 9-2, facing long-time rivals demands caution. The Sharks, currently in last place, may pose a threat if underestimated. Coach Todd McLellan and his players cannot afford to ease up, recognizing the importance of securing wins and generating positive storylines in the coming weeks.

Offensively, the Kings are facing challenges in scoring consistently, particularly at 5v5. This game presents a prime opportunity to assert their competitive presence and dispel any notions that their strong start to the season was a fluke. McLellan and the Kings must emphasize their status as a formidable team in the league.

PL Dubois is anticipated to continue playing at left wing alongside Anze Kopitar and Adrian Kempe, solidifying their role as LA’s top line. McLellan acknowledges the adjustment for Dubois, who is accustomed to playing the centre position, but emphasizes his significant contribution to the team’s overall performance.

In the goaltending department, David Rittich is set to make his third consecutive start after delivering exceptional performances. With a remarkable 1.66 goals-against average in his first six starts of the season, Rittich has only conceded five goals in his last four appearances. McLellan commends Rittich’s crucial saves, especially during penalty-killing situations, and confidently declares him the starter for the upcoming game against San Jose.

McLellan’s decision to openly announce Rittich as the starting goalie is uncommon in the NHL, where coaches typically keep such information under wraps. However, McLellan attributes the decision to Rittich’s impressive performance and the coaching staff’s unanimous agreement. Rittich himself credits his time with AHL Ontario for honing his skills and finding his rhythm, expressing gratitude for the support from players, coaches, and staff.

As Rittich continues to shine between the pipes for the Kings, he reflects on the valuable playing time he gained with AHL Ontario, surpassing his game totals from the previous two seasons. With the prospect of challenging his career-high games played by the season’s end, Rittich remains focused and composed, contributing to the Kings’ resurgence in the competitive landscape.

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