At the Rink: Avalanche at Kings

Wednesday, 01.27.2016 / 4:03 PM | Curtis Zupke  - Correspondent

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- The Los Angeles Kings aim to go into the All-Star break on a winning note when they play the Colorado Avalanche at Staples Center on Wednesday (10:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, SN1, SNE, SNO, SNW).

The Kings have a seven-point lead on the San Jose Sharks in the Pacific Division but don't want to squander points in their final game before the break.

"You've got four or five days to live with the game after and think about it," Kings defenseman Luke Schenn said. "We're not fully comfortable with where we are, so we've got to keep pushing forward. Colorado's a good team with a lot of skill … they're obviously going to rebound and play hard tonight, so it's going to be a really good challenge for us."

Schenn joined the Kings in a trade earlier this month and has helped them keep their post-Christmas break success going. Los Angeles is 10-4-1 in its past 16 games.

"That was one of the first things I noticed when I got here was how high the expectations are," Schenn said. "It's not like you're OK with just trying to squeak in the playoffs and see what happens. I think there's a real goal here in mind. It's kind of the way the culture is around here … it's definitely a different feel coming from another organization."

Colorado had a four-game winning streak end Tuesday with a 6-1 loss at San Jose and is without goalie Semyon Varlamov because of a legal matter. Calvin Pickard and Roman Will allowed five goals in the loss to the Sharks. Pickard, who played through illness Tuesday, is expected to start again.

Here are the projected lineups:


Alex Tanguay - Nathan MacKinnon - Matt Duchene

Gabriel Landeskog - Carl Soderberg - Blake Comeau

Andreas Martinsen - Mikhail Grigorenko - Jarome Iginla

Cody McLeod - John Mitchell - Jack Skille

Francois Beauchemin - Erik Johnson

Nick Holden - Tyson Barrie

Zach Redmond - Chris Bigras

Calvin Pickard

Roman Will

Injured: Reto Berra (ankle), Ben Street (chest), Brad Stuart (back), Jesse Winchester (head)

Scratched: Nate Guenin, Semyon Varlamov, Chris Wagner, Andrew Bodnarchuk


Milan Lucic - Anze Kopitar - Tyler Toffoli

Marian Gaborik - Jeff Carter - Dustin Brown

Dwight King - Vincent Lecavalier - Trevor Lewis

Tanner Pearson - Nick Shore - Jordan Nolan

Brayden McNabb - Drew Doughty

Jake Muzzin - Alec Martinez

Luke Schenn - Christian Ehrhoff

Jonathan Quick

Jhonas Enroth

Injured: Kyle Clifford (upper body), Matt Greene (shoulder)

Scratched: Andy Andreoff, Jamie McBain

Status report: Grigorenko missed Tuesday because of illness and his status is unknown. Quick was off the ice first. Lucic returns from a one-game suspension.

Who's hot: MacKinnon has two goals in his past three games. Kopitar has points in 20 of his past 26 games. Brown is on a two-game point streak.

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