Skip to main content

Domi to make debut for Coyotes, Weal for Kings

by Curtis Zupke / NHL.com

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Arizona Coyotes forward Max Domi and Los Angeles Kings center Jordan Weal will make their NHL debut at Staples Center on Friday.

Domi, 20, is expected to help the Coyotes offense after it was the second-lowest scoring in the NHL last season with 165 goals.

"I can't wait," Domi told the Coyotes website recently. "It's really exciting, for sure. My family's going to come down. … Hopefully we can get a win and start the season off the right way."

Domi, the son of former NHL player Tie Domi, is slotted on the top line with veterans Antoine Vermette and Mikkel Boedker. He was the 12th pick in the 2013 NHL Draft.

"He's waited a long time for it, and he's earned the right to be here," coach Dave Tippett said. "It will be very exciting for him. He's a very mature kid. He'll get in, and I expect him to play very well."

Weal made the Kings out of training camp in his fifth year in the organization. He was picked by Los Angeles in the third round (No. 70) of the 2010 NHL Draft.

"A lot of hard work has gone into getting into this part of my career," the 23-year-old said. "The hard work's just going to continue. It's going to keep going. I'm trying to do as much as I can in this game and improve moving forward."

Weal was third in the American Hockey League in scoring last season (69 points) and was named most valuable player in the playoffs after he helped Manchester win the Calder Cup.

Kings coach Darryl Sutter isn't typically receptive to young players but wants to generate competition in his bottom six. The Kings are coming off a 5-1 season-opening loss to the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday.

"He's going to play," Sutter said of Weal. "It's part of what we talked about before camp as an organization … we're going to have find ways to get guys all in, and based on performance and not staying out too long. If someone can get ahead of someone else, then let them run with it.

"It's a good thing for all those guys. There's probably four guys that are going to have to play well to stay in the lineup, or even when they do, someone else, [you don't] want to leave them out too long."

Sutter said he likes Weal's maturity and that the key is for him to adapt to a faster game against bigger players.

"It should be a lot of fun tonight," Weal (5-foot-10, 179 pounds) said. "The crowd's going to be going, a lot of excitement. We've just got to get to our game."

Here are the projected lineups:

COYOTES

Max Domi - Antoine Vermette - Mikkel Boedker

Tobias Rieder - Martin Hanzal - Anthony Duclair

Kyle Chipchura - Brad Richardson - Shane Doan

Jordan Martinook - Boyd Gordon - Steve Downie

Oliver Ekman-Larsson - Michael Stone

Nicklas Grossman - Connor Murphy

Klas Dahlbeck - Zbynek Michalek

Mike Smith

Anders Lindback

Injured: None

Scratched: Joe Vitale, Stefan Elliott, John Scott

KINGS

MIlan Lucic - Anze Kopitar - Marian Gaborik

Tanner Pearson - Jeff Carter - Tyler Toffoli

Dustin Brown - Trevor Lewis - Nick Shore

Kyle Clifford - Jordan Weal - Jordan Nolan

Jake Muzzin - Drew Doughty

Christian Ehrhoff - Matt Greene

Alec Martinez - Brayden McNabb

Jonathan Quick

Jhonas Enroth

Injured: Dwight King (lower body)

Scratched: Derek Forbort, Andy Andreoff, Jeff Schultz

Status report: The Kings had an optional skate and did not do line rushes. … McNabb is expected to return to the lineup after Sutter scratched him Wednesday because of what Sutter said was a poor camp. "It's tough," McNabb said. "You always want to be in there, helping your teammates. Sometimes that how it goes." He could play with Martinez unless Sutter wants to keep the Greene-Martinez pair intact. … Scott reportedly cleared waivers.

Who's hot: Shore scored the Kings' goal in their opener.

View More