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Kings Notebook (Oct. 5)

by Rich Hammond / Los Angeles Kings
Terry Murray was not quick with a hook after his starting netminder surrendered six goals.
The raw numbers from Saturday's season opener didn't appear kind to Kings goalie Jonathan Quick: 30 shots, six goals in a 6-3 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes.

That's usually enough to make any coach cringe, but after the game Terry Murray didn't hesitate when he said he didn't give any thought to pulling Quick from the game. After Monday's practice, Murray elaborated.

"I thought Quick played well," Murray said. "Don’t misinterpret me. There were some goals that he wants to have back. There might be three of them, but when you look at them in isolation… That’s one of the reasons why I didn’t make a change. I was asked that question after the game. He was in the right position. He’s on top, he’s challenging, he’s doing all the right stuff. He looks comfortable. Pucks just got by him.

"I watched it again on the video, and that reinforced it. He’s fine. He just has to make those stops. I’m going to go with him again. I’m not going to throw away the training camp and the confidence that I have in him, in making that kind of decision right now. He’s the guy I’m going with."

Murray confirmed, without really being asked, that Quick will start in goal Tuesday against San Jose.

How is Quick as a "bounce-back" goalie? Last season, he had an 11-8-1 record in games following a loss.

Dustin Brown returned to practice Monday after missing Sunday's skate with a strained gluteal muscle and is expected to play Tuesday night at Staples Center.

Wayne Simmonds, however, missed Monday's practice. Murray called it a "therapy day" for Simmonds and did not elaborate, other than to say that he expects Simmonds to play against San Jose.

Murray said he had yet to decide whether Peter Harrold would join the lineup Tuesday in place of rookie defenseman Alec Martinez, and said he would make the decision before Tuesday's morning skate.

Harrold practiced at right wing on Monday in place of Simmonds. Martinez had a minus-2 rating in his NHL debut Saturday.

"I was going to use Peter on the blue line today in practice, but he's that utility guy that's great to have," Murray said. "We're still considering that, making a change on the back end. We talked yesterday and we'll talk again today and think about it and make a decision by tomorrow's skate in the morning."


The San Jose Mercury News reported Monday afternoon that Sharks center Joe Pavelski will be out at least two weeks "after undergoing a minor procedure ... for a lower body injury."

Pavelski had two points (both assists) in San Jose's first two games and had 25 goals and 34 assists last year.

Murray said he didn't anticipate many changes from the Sharks, who made a summer blockbuster trade when they acquired Dany Heatley from Ottawa for Milan Michalek and Jonathan Cheechoo.

"I don't think they're going to make big changes," Murray said. "They had their coach come in last year and they had a very successful regular season. I think his philosophy, his foundation, his fundamentals are in place. I don't know if I'm right, but I don't anticipate there to be big changes in their overall structure and philosophy going into this season.

"I think they're just going to reinforce it and let their good players and skill take over, and play the right way."

Murray said he spoke with defenseman Drew Doughty, who had arguably his worst NHL game in Saturday's season opener -- including two turnovers that led to Phoenix goals -- and stressed the importance of playing a "hard, heavy, strong" game.

"I met with him yesterday after practice," Murray said. "I don't want to get into all the specifics of what was going on there, but it was just reinforcing his game from last year and how good of a player he is and how he needs to continually approach with that mindset."
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