The Los Angeles Kings are off to an 11-6-1 start to the season, but fins themselves fifth in a highly competitive Pacific Division. The Kings will now face their toughest test of the season, as star goaltender Jonathan Quick is expected to miss at least a week with a groin injury. With the Kings on a three-game road trip to the New York area this weekend, Quick will be evaluated in Los Angeles while his team turns to Ben Scrivens and possibly recent call-up Martin Jones. Scrivens, who was acquired in a trade this summer, is 1-1-1 with a 1.89 goals-against average and a shutout, while Jones has yet to play in an NHL game.
Quick is 10-5-0 this season as a starter while posting a respectable 2.35 goals-against average and a .924 save percentage. Scrivens is a capable backup, but has never been looked to for full-time duty. With games on Thursday, Friday and Sunday the Kings may finally chose to give Jones his first start. Now in his fourth AHL season with the Manchester Monarchs, Jones has posted a winning record in each of his prior seasons and is off to a 9-2-2 start to the current one. The Kings will turn to Scrivens for Thursday night’s game against the New York Islanders, and Jones could get the start Friday against the New York Rangers or Sunday against the New Jersey Devils. The fortunate thing for the Kings is that none of these three teams has a winning record and it is early in the season, so there may never be a better time for the team to give Jones his first taste of action at the highest level.
If Jones plays, he would be the second player to make an NHL debut for the Kings this season. Winger Linden Vey got the call last week, and has one assist in three games.