A look at the Kings' projected roster a week before the season

www.latimes.com
7 min read
fairly easy
The Kings open the NHL season on Jan. 14 against the Minnesota Wild. Midway through training camp, the roster has some certainties, but also plenty of questions.
Halfway through their condensed training camp, the Kings' lineup is beginning to come into focus ahead of their Jan. 14 season opener.

While the final spots on the 23-man active roster, as well as a four-to-six player taxi squad, remain up in the air, "we have a pretty good idea of where we're going to go [with the 20-man lineup] to start," coach Todd McLellan said this week.

Based on the lines the Kings have used during their first week of practice, here's who could be on the ice come opening night against the Minnesota Wild:

Forwards

Alex Iafallo-Anze Kopitar-Dustin Brown: The Kings will keep intact their top line from most of last season, when Kopitar (21 goals, 62 points) and Iafallo (17 goals, 43 points) led the team in scoring.

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Iafallo, 27, is entering the final year of his contract and general manager Rob Blake said before training camp he planned on negotiating a potential extension with the forward "as the season gets going." After trailing only Kopitar in playing time among forwards last year, Iafallo will continue to be used in all situations, including power play and penalty kill.

"Alex had a tremendous season last year, especially the second half," McLellan said. "If he can build on the offensive part, he'll complement the two guys that he's playing with."

Andreas Athanasiou–Blake Lizotte–Jeff Carter: A speedy 26-year-old winger who has averaged better than a half-point-per-game in his five-year career and scored 30 goals with the Detroit Red Wings two seasons ago, Athanasiou cleared quarantine protocols and practiced for the first time Wednesday after signing a one-year, $1.2-million contract last month. (He will be a restricted free agent this summer.)

"We signed him because we believe we're going to have a very motivated hungry player," McLellan said. "He's at a point in his career where it's time to step in and really get it going and prove to the world that you're a legitimate 20- to 30-goal scorer every year. And we…
Jack Harris
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