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Kings at Sharks preview

Campbell starts in goal for Los Angeles; Simek returns for San Jose

by Ross McKeon / Independent Correspondent

KINGS (15-20-4) at SHARKS (16-20-2)


The Game

Radim Simek will return to the lineup when the San Jose Sharks host the Los Angeles Kings at SAP Center on Friday.

The defenseman, who missed the past eight games because of a knee injury, was activated off injured reserve on Friday. He has four points (one goal, three assists) in 16 games this season, and the Sharks are 11-4-1 with him in the lineup.

Aaron Dell will start for San Jose, which has lost three straight and is 1-8-1 in its past 10 games after going 11-2-0 in its previous 13.
Jack Campbell will start for Los Angeles, which has lost two straight and is 0-2-1 in its past three games.


Players to watch

Kings defenseman Drew Doughty has eight points (one goal, seven assists) in his past 10 games.

Sharks left wing Tomas Hertl has four goals and three assists in a six-game point streak.


They said it 

"A lot of players have looked forward to that break to spend some time with their families and it goes by pretty fast. But we're professionals, we put the work boots on, get right back at it and that's what we expect from our group." -- Kings coach Todd McLellan following the Christmas break

"The team that starts on time is going to have the bigger advantage. We had a good talk about treating this as Game 1 of a new season. … we know we've got to put together some runs here and it's important that starts tonight." -- Sharks Bob Boughner


Kings projected lineup

Alex Iafallo -- Anze Kopitar -- Tyler Toffoli

Adrian Kempe -- Blake Lizotte -- Austin Wagner

Kyle Clifford -- Jeff Carter -- Matt Luff

Nikolai Prokhorkin -- Michael Amadio -- Martin Frk

Joakim Ryan -- Drew Doughty

Ben Hutton -- Matt Roy

Kale Clague -- Sean Walker

Jack Campbell

Jonathan Quick

Scratched: Kurtis MacDermid

Injured: Derek Forbort (back), Alec Martinez (wrist), Trevor Lewis (upper body), Gabriel Vilardi (back), Dustin Brown (illness)


Sharks projected lineup  

Evander Kane -- Logan Couture -- Barclay Goodrow

Timo Meier -- Tomas Hertl -- Kevin Labanc

Marcus Sorensen -- Joe Thornton -- Patrick Marleau  

Melker Karlsson -- Joel Kellman -- Stefan Noesen

Marc-Edouard Vlasic -- Erik Karlsson

Radim Simek -- Brent Burns

Brenden Dillon -- Mario Ferraro

Aaron Dell

Martin Jones

Scratched: Antti Suomela, Tim Heed

Injured: Dalton Prout (upper body)

Status report

Lewis was placed on injured reserve retroactive to Dec. 21. ... Brown did not travel with the team. … Tofolli replaces Brown on the first line. ... Ferraro is expected to return to the lineup after missing the past three games. … Hertl moves back to center after playing the past five games at left wing. … The Sharks assigned defenseman Jacob Middleton and forward Noah Gregor to San Jose of the American Hockey League. 


Stat pack

Thornton needs two assists to tie Adam Oates (1,079) for seventh place on the NHL all-time list. … Burns has a three-game point streak (one goal, three assists).

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