Lost in all the furor over injuries to Jonathan Quick, Marian Gaborik, and Anze Kopitar: Brayden McNabb. He’s still working his way back from a broken collarbone. It’s a lot easier to estimate the contributions we miss from forwards and goalies as they’re injured. Gaborik and Kopitar probably would have contributed an extra ten goals in the season’s first two months if fully healthy, right? But for McNabb, who only had 14 points last year, missing the entire month of November doesn’t show itself on offense. Instead, you have to think of where his 20 minutes a game are going. Derek Forbort has a 47.8% Corsi For% playing largely with Drew Doughty, while Kevin Gravel (50.0% Corsi For%) might not even be in. McNabb’s CF% before injury: 62.8%. His impact is underrated, but is as large as anyone’s.
- Jon Rosen has a long article up today about Dwight King and Jordan Nolan, who have expressed their support for the Standing Rock Sioux in their ongoing opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline. King and Nolan are both of Aboriginal descent, and both had a lot to say about the issue and its recent coverage. It’s an excellent, nuanced piece. [LA Kings Insider]
- Closer to home, the Kings have been extremely supportive of the Make-a-Wish Foundation for many years. Tomorrow, they’re being honored with the Foundation’s inaugural “Power of a Wish Award” for their dedication at the Make-a-Wish Gala in Hollywood. [Make-a-Wish]
- Rosen had an interesting note on McNabb. He’s working with his power skating coach: former Olympic speedskater Dave Cruikshank. So here’s a preview of how McNabb might look when he returns!
- Concussions are in the spotlight again. Connor McDavid was pulled before a 5-on-3 power play to be evaluated, the Oilers failed to score, they lost by a goal, and Patrick Maroon blasted the process. There’s a reason the process is there, you know. [SB Nation]
- Speaking of: Philip Larsen took a hard hit from Taylor Hall tonight and had to leave the ice on a stretcher. Note to the Canucks: if you want to defend your teammate, do not start by literally kicking him when he’s down. [NHL]
- Bob McKenzie went on TSN Radio this morning to discuss the shifting value of goaltending as the expansion draft approaches. Worth keeping in mind as LA continues to decide whether a Budaj-Zatkoff duo will survive. [TSN]
13 goals. Yep, 13.
GAME TO WATCH
Another free game streaming tonight on NHL.com: Montreal vs. St. Louis.