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Kings Notebook (Oct. 26)

by Rich Hammond / Los Angeles Kings
Captain Dustin Brown was not worried about being suspended for the hit he made on Monday night.
HICAGO -- There was a small sense of relief, but little surprise, among the Kings when the afternoon passed without a call from the NHL office regarding Dustin Brown.

In Monday night's victory over Minnesota, Brown was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct for his hit on Antti Miettinen, which was ruled by on-ice officials as a hit to the head.

Based on that, Brown was subject to supplemental discipline from the league office, but none was handed out Tuesday. Video reviews appeared to show that Brown struck Miettinen just inside the shoulder, below the chin, and the Kings were adamant that Brown should not receive further punishment.

Asked today if he had been worried about a possible suspension, Brown shrugged.

``No, not really,'' Brown said. ``After looking at the replay, like I said last night, I can understand why the ref made the call. There's such a scrutiny on those type of hits, but I wasn't that worried about it when I saw the replay. Shoulder to shoulder, he had the puck, he was shooting, it wasn't late or anything like that. I think he was out [playing] for the first minute of that power play.''

Drew Doughty will miss his fourth consecutive game tomorrow, with what is officially being called an upper-body injury, and there's no guarantee as to when Doughty will return.

Kings coach Terry Murray indicated that Doughty will also not join the team in Dallas for Thursday's game, meaning that the soonest Doughty would be able to play would be Saturday, in the Kings' home game against the New Jersey Devils.

``We'll let this thing heal properly and make sure that everything is good when he gets back in,'' Murray said. ``I think it's just a matter of he and the doctor working it out. As soon as he is feeling good and ready to go, we'll get him back in the lineup.

``If he was to join us in Dallas, I would put him in right away. But he's not going to be here. He will be at home, obviously, and we'll see how he is whenever we get back. There's no question that I'm going to play him as soon as possible.''

Against the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks, the Kings will go with backup Jonathan Bernier in goal Wednesday. Jonathan Quick is scheduled to start Thursday in Dallas.

Bernier will get his third start of the season. He allowed two goals in a loss to Calgary and allowed three goals in a win over Carolina, and will face the Blackhawks for the first time in his career.

Murray previously said that he wanted to play Quick against Pacific Division opponents, meaning that Quick will get the call against the Stars and Bernier will get the defending champions.

``That's part of it,'' Murray said, ``and going back to the start of the year, this is just one of the games that we took a lot at, with back-to-backs, and there's no need to play one goaltender in both of them. It's going to be a challenge for him against a great hockey club, the defending champions, so I think he's looking forward to it.''

Murray said that, against the Blackhawks, he would stay with the same defensive lineup, meaning that Jake Muzzin -- called up from Manchester of the AHL yesterday -- will be a healthy scratch.

As for the fourth line, Murray said he had not yet decided who would play. Kyle Clifford, Trevor Lewis, Andrei Loktionov, Brayden Schenn and Kevin Westgarth were all in green fourth-line uniforms.

Scott Parse, out since the first preseason game with a groin injury, continues to skate at full speed and participate in full practice drills, and Parse indicated that his return might not be far away.

``I don't know when, but it's close,'' Parse said after Tuesday's practice. ``It's not fun not playing, but the guys are doing real well, and when I come back I just hope to contribute as much as I can and keep it going.''

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