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PURCELL RETURNS TO TOP LINE

by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
The Kings will play host to the St. Louis Blues tonight at STAPLES Center at 7:30 p.m.


WELCOME BACK TEDDY
Teddy Purcell returns to the lineup today and will see action on the top line along side Anze Kopitar and Patrick O’Sullivan.

“Those are two of the top offensive players on the team, I just have to go out there, give them the puck and find a way to get open,” Purcell said. “Hopefully we complement each other well and we find some early chemistry.”

Dustin Brown will slide down to the Kings No. 2 line, with Jarret Stoll and Kyle Calder... Kings lineup for tonight.

“I think that it’s a change that needed to be made,” Brown said. “Obviously with the game in Colorado we didn’t come out with a lot of energy - it was a team funk for that one game. Jumble the lines around a bit and get players playing with new players, it brings a little bit of new excitement and new energy and to the locker room and to the ice.”

Interesting, the man Purcell bumped to the second line loaned him his skates. As of the morning skate, Purcell’s equipment had not yet arrived and he was borrowing Brown’s skates and used the sticks of Stoll and Wayne Simmonds to find a stick that he felt comfortable with.

THE REST OF THE LINEUP CHANGES
Oscar Moller will center the Kings fourth line with Raitis Ivanans, who is feeling better after missing yesterday’s practice with the flu, and John Zeiler. The third line of Frolov, Simmonds and Michal Handzus will stay in tact.

The defense also was shaken up a bit as Kyle Quincey was promoted to the No. 1 pairing with rookie sensation Drew Doughty, dropping Sean O’Donnell back to the No. 2 pairing with Matt Greene.

“On the defensive side of things, I think that we are using some players a whole lot out there,” Head coach Terry Murray said. “We have been talking to the coaching staff about four or five games ago and I have talked to somebody else about it, and it is a little bit of a concern that some players are getting quite a few minutes, minutes maybe they weren’t used to playing over the past years. It can be quite demanding to dig in that deep night after night.

“Hopefully by doing this, it will give us an opportunity to look to Quincey, who has played very well for us, to be able to play in different situations. Maybe on the other side we can back off some on some players, so that they can feel a bit of a regroup.”

Doughty is leading the team in ice time with 23:27, Quinicey is second at 22:19 and 37-year-old Sean O’Donnell is third on the team, average 21:18 per game.

“[O’Donnell] has played well but I see a difference from the first 15 games when he was outstanding and really had a huge - still has a huge - contribution and he was very effective,” Murray said.”There have been some situations that have developed in the last few games that I know is the result of having to dig in too deep night after night. So this is going to give him the opportunity to regroup.”

Denis Gauthier will skate with Peter Harrold as the third pair of defensive partners while Tom Preissing is expected to be a healthy scratch. Out are Brad Richardson (foot) and Derek Armstrong (headache).

ABOUT ST. LOUIS
St. Louis Blues goaltender Manny Legace is listed as day-to-day after getting kneed in the head.

Legace was hurt in the first period of Wednesday's 4-2 loss at Anaheim. He gave up one goal on 11 shots before leaving.

The Blues recalled goalie Ben Bishop from Peoria of the American Hockey League. Bishop made his NHL debut on Oct. 24 against Los Angeles, at 6-foot-7 becoming the tallest goalie to play in the league. In three games this season, he is 1-0-1 with a 2.41 goals against average.

The Kings are 2-0-0 in the season series with the Blues, whom they've outscored 9-3 in those games.

Brad Boyes leads the Blues with 15 goals and 28 points. David Perron leads the team with 15 assists and Patrick Berglund is a team-high +12.
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