Kings blogger John Hoven reported last night that the Kings could be shaking things up:
No official word yet on a move and no real hints as to what the move may be, but we have some guesses.
The most likely scenario is that one of the Kings' eight defensemen gets moved. The likely candidates being Alec Martinez (sadface.jpg) and Keaton Ellerby. Also, there is a glut of bottom six centers (Trevor Lewis, Jarrett Stoll, and Colin Fraser), none of which have exactly set the world afire so far this season. There is a slight chance the Kings could make some room by dumping one if they have trouble getting value for one of their defensemen. Still, I'd think Ellerby would get waived before L.A. parted with a forward.
The move could be coming soon as Kings GM Dean Lombardi is headed off to attend GM meetings.
The obvious candidates for a call up are Tanner Pearson, Tyler Toffoli and Linden Vey.
Pearson is the odds on favorite due to the fact that L.A. desperately needs a LW. Pearson is currently among the league leaders in the AHL in shots and has potted 5 goals in 10 games. He also got a taste of high level NHL hockey, when he was inserted into the line-up for game 3 of Sharks series last post-season. Dean Lombardi has been glowing in his praise of Pearson in the past.
Toffoli has the most NHL experience and is currently on fire in the AHL. He's got 12 points in 10 games, including 2 goals and an assist in yesterday's game. Lombardi was on hand to witness the effort which probably bolsters Toffoli's chances even though there currently isn't a lot of room on the right side of the Kings' forward corps. Also, Darryl Sutter recently admitted that attempts to move him to his off wing were foolish.
Vey is the long-shot, but is a solid and versatile two way center who might be the solution to anchor the Kings 3rd line which has been a disappointment this season.
I don't see how bringing up two, if not all three, of the above couldn't be an improvement over what the Kings current bottom six has to offer. Pearson-Vey-Toffoli has been one of the more exciting and formidable lines in the AHL. L.A.'s third line (which has been a mix of Jarrett Stoll, Trevor Lewis, Dwight King and Matt Frattin) have some ugly possession numbers to go along with a lack of point production.
The Kings usually like to rely on their third line for conservative, low-event hockey so plugging in two or three rookies there has snowball's chance in hell. Still, a hockey blog can dream.