Prior to Wednesday’s 2-1 win over Pittsburgh, Todd McLellan shared that Jeff Carter (lower-body) had previously been slated for a return against the Penguins, but that plan was pushed back when he didn’t respond well to skating on his own on Tuesday at Toyota Sports Performance Center.
“We anticipated him being back for today’s game, but when he tried to skate [Tuesday], it wasn’t good, and then today we just held him off again. So, day-to-day. Obviously ‘no’ to playing [versus Pittsburgh], and we’ll see where he is [Thursday].”
It was the fourth consecutive game missed by Carter, who ranks second on the Kings with 17 goals. The hope is to get him on the ice and back into game action “as soon as we can,” according to McLellan.
“We need him. We need that center ice position filled or at least have that veteran presence in the lineup that scoring ability. So, we’ll take him any time he’s ready.”
Los Angeles returns to action over the weekend with a back-to-back set that begins at 1:00 p.m. Saturday at home against New Jersey an concludes Sunday in Vegas at 7:30 p.m.
Todd McLellan, on whether this was the “better checking effort” he’d hoped to see:
Certainly, yeah. That’s a very easy question to answer. Teams are still going to get opportunities, but they’re not free ones. At least we’re near our checks or we have the ability to…