EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Linden Vey's family lives too far for them to come to Los Angeles for an extended period of time. Vey is from Wakaw, Saskatchewan, with a population of about 1,000.
"Really small," Vey said. "Everybody knows everybody."
They will have to settle for seeing Vey on television for his NHL debut, as is expected when Vey and the Los Angeles Kings play the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday. Vey took line rushes at center on the fourth line while Colin Fraser stayed out for extra skating.
"You just got to think of it as just another hockey game," Vey said. "Obviously it's a little more than that. I've been playing ever since I was 4 years old and I'm looking forward to this. I think there will be a little bit of nerves the first shift, but once I get into it I'll be fine."
Vey, 22, is one of the team's better forward prospects and has formed a great line with the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League with Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson.
Vey and Toffoli were recalled because Jeff Carter went on injured reserve with a foot injury. General manager Dean Lombardi said "it's still a process" developing younger players but he is comfortable seeing them with the big club.
"One thing I admire with them is that they've shown they're top players in the American league," Lombardi said. "I think they're ready for this next step."
Lombardi told NHL.com that injuries to Carter, Matt Greene (undisclosed) and Jarret Stoll (upper body) are day-to-day situations but acknowledged that Stoll could be a week-to-week situation if he aggravates his injury or it doesn't get better.
Stoll skated on his own after practice.
"Once he starts skating with the team we'll get a better read on it," coach Darryl Sutter said.
Jonathan Quick is expected to start in goal for the Kings but likely won't go against fellow U.S. Olympic team hopeful Ryan Miller. Jhonas Enroth reportedly will start for Buffalo.
"We try to map things out and it was Jhonas' game," Sabres coach Ron Rolston told the Buffalo News at Staples Center in Los Angeles, where the Sabres practiced. "That has nothing to do with it." That means Ryan Miller will start Friday against the Anaheim Ducks. Rolston said picking Enroth to start against the Kings had nothing to with him trying to keep Enroth away from the Ducks, who beat Enroth 6-3 in Buffalo on Nov. 2.
Here are the expected lineups for the Sabres and Kings:
Matt Moulson - Cody Hodgson - Tyler Ennis
Steve Ott - Marcus Foligno - Corey Tropp
Zemgus Girgensons - Johan Larsson - Brian Flynn
Ville Leino - Cody McCormick - Drew Stafford
Christian Ehrhoff - Mark Pysyk
Henrik Tallinder - Tyler Myers
Jamie McBain - Rasmus Ristolainen
Scratched: Nikita Zadorov, Mikhail Grigorenko
Suspended: John Scott
Injured: Mike Weber (upper body)
Dustin Brown - Anze Kopitar - Justin Williams
Dwight King - Mike Richards - Tyler Toffoli
Daniel Carcillo - Trevor Lewis - Matt Frattin
Kyle Clifford - Linden Vey - Jordan Nolan
Jake Muzzin - Drew Doughty
Robyn Regehr - Slava Voynov
Willie Mitchell - Alec Martinez
Scratched: Colin Fraser
Injured: Jeff Carter (foot), Jarret Stoll (upper body), Matt Greene (undisclosed)