After last night's practice, I more or less applied to be Jake Muzzin's agent:
Jewels from the Crown: How are the ice conditions?
Jake Muzzin: Ice was good, yeah. Really good. The league did a great job on setting up. [The ice is] hard. It didn't get chewed up as much as I thought it would be, so it's nice.
JftC: How does it compare so far to last year's Dodger Stadium ice?
Muzzin: Well, they're both good. I think it's a little better for the skate we had today...we'll see how it is tomorrow. I'm sure it'll be fine.
JftC: I write for Jewels from the Crown. At our site, we're very advanced stats-focused, Corsi and all that kind of thing. Did you know that in advanced stats, your stats are off the charts incredible?
Muzzin: Yeah? Well, that's just a tribute to the team and playing with great players. Until you told me that, I didn't know.
JftC: I think your agent should know about that!
Muzzin: Yeah, but you don't want to talk about that stuff, just go and try to win every game. But when you play with such good players...I'm sure a bunch of our guys are probably near the top. I don't really follow it that much, but I understand it's out there. It's just a reflection from the team play.
JftC: I should find your agent and let him know for your next contract.
Muzzin: I think when you negotiate, they don't take those stats into the situation. They leave those out. Or else I could use it, I guess...
Jon Rosen: Be careful with these guys, they're really rough on you on their site.
JftC: Oh no! I just told him...he said nobody's told him how good he is at Corsi and all those things!
Rosen: This is Jake Muzzin fan club right over here...
JftC: Thanks a lot, Jake! Just don't tell anyone...
Muzzin: Small club, right? I appreciate you guys, thank you!
Only the hard-hitting questions for Tyler Toffoli!
JftC: Who takes care of Bruno when you're out of town?
Tyler Toffoli: I have some friends that take care of him. He actually goes to a dog sitter, who kind of trains him a little bit. He's a young pup.
JftC: How long have you had him for?
Toffoli: Two months, I think. Two months or so.
JftC: You were the NHL's second star last week. Has it been an adjustment, hearing your name out there more?
Toffoli: No, I'm just taking it like I've been taking it all season long. Just trying to get better as the season goes along. Stay consistent with my game and help the team win.
Derek Forbort is getting paid:
JftC: How's the experience being up with the team so far?
Derek Forbort: It's been good! Just trying to learn as I go. Just trying to acquire some practice and compete.
JftC: How much has your per diem gone up, like 10 times?
Forbort: [laughs] Yeah, it was a little weird getting that...seeing that raise you get. But it's not about that.
JftC: Based on practices, how is the speed different from the AHL?
Forbort: I think the biggest difference is how smart all the players are. They're always in the right position all the time. It's a lot faster-paced in practice. You have to do everything 100%.
Finally, I spoke with Dana Bryson, Los Angeles Kings Assistant Equipment Manager. If you've been watching EPIX's Road to the Stadium Series, you know him as its latest star.
JftC: Do you find your profile has increased since EPIX's Stadium Series show?
Dana Bryson: A little bit. I've heard from a lot of people that I haven't heard from in a long time. I gotta thank Darren Granger, our head guy, for letting me do that. We've spent about a month now with the [EPIX] crew, so we got to know them. That was good. I felt pretty comfortable with them.
JftC: Any good outtakes upcoming?
Bryson: I wish, I wish. I don't know what they got planned for the outtakes. But Matt Greene has been really funny with these guys. He really messes with them everyday. And that's about it. Like we said, we've been hanging out with them, and you almost forget that they're there. Which is good, which is what they want. I'm sure they have me tripping or falling 14 times or flipping them off a million times. It's been fun though. It's a good experience. We've had this for the last couple of years, but on a much smaller level. This is probably the first time where they've been around for like a month straight. You get to know them and you make friendships and stuff. It's good off the ice. We've gone out a couple times and shared an adult beverage along the way, so you really get to know them.
JftC: What are you going to do with your new-found celebrity?
Bryson: [laughs] Hide. Yes. Yes. There's a reason why I like to work behind the scenes.
JftC: Does Drew give you a hard time for some of the things you said about him [on the show]?
Bryson: There's nothing I haven't said to him before. Like I said, he's a pure genius on the ice. He really is. He's unbelievable. There's a reason why I said that. But we kid each other. Trust me, I get just as much as I give. Probably twice as much. I get twice as much as I give.
JftC: What do you "get" from the [players]? Or is that for closed doors?
Bryson: Bobby Halfacre and I flew up last night, did a lot of set up in this [locker] room. They always joke about me putting up signs and stickers and stuff everywhere. They said, "Wow, you had to come up a whole day early to do this." Myles Hirayama, our medical guy, would say, "This is your Super Bowl right here. This is what you live for." I take some extra [kidding]. Oh well, I'm getting a little older. They pick on me less. Been here longer than most of them. I still get it from Brownie and Kopi, those guys have been here for a while.
JftC: Well, you'll outlast both of them.
Bryson: Maybe! [laughs] You never know, you never know these days. The way these contracts [go], they might outlast me.
[UPDATE, 12:30 PM, Eric]: Adding a couple additional quotes from after last night's practice. First, Jordan Nolan, on the newest King:
JftC: Any period of adaptation with Shore coming in and the lines changing a little bit?
Nolan: No, I mean, I think we're starting to work well together. You know, Shorey, he's a smart young player and we're kinda rolling, six in a row, I think, and Shorey's been a big part of that. He's playing some big minutes and helping this club get going.
JftC: Noticing any differences between the ice and the atmosphere so far, from Dodger Stadium?
Nolan: I think the ice is about the same, I feel like, but definitely the atmosphere feels a lot different. Dodger Stadium was pretty neat but when you're out on a football field it's a little different, and it's pretty cool.
Robyn Regehr, meanwhile, can be flexible without changing the approach:
JftC: Any differences from a normal road trip so far, in terms of practicing and preparing for the game?
Regehr: Yeah, it's been a little different in that we actually left late today and came in for an evening practice. I think everyone would usually prefer the morning practice and to be able to get it over with, but you know, it's a different event and a different venue. So you have to be flexible with the kind of things you're willing to do.
JftC: You're obviously very familiar with the Sharks by now, but has the recent win streak changed anything for how you're approaching this game?
Regehr: No, for us, what we're focusing on first of all is what we need to do to win. We're aware of the opponent being San Jose, very familiar with them, played them lots over the previous couple years, regular season and playoffs. So I think we realize that, for us, the most important thing when we start stringing wins together is to continue doing good habits. You know, you don't want to drift away from things that are allowing you to be successful as a team and as individuals, so for us we've just gotta stay diligent in doing the proper things, and that's probably the biggest challenge.
Regehr: And then there will be the challenge of playing in a different venue and outdoor ice. So it's not gonna be as nice as playing indoors but it's still gonna be a lot of fun. It's gonna be very challenging in some ways when the ice gets beat up a little bit but that's the way it was outdoors as a kid and that's the way it's gonna be again.