Warning: Ex-King content (CON-tent and con-TENT)

Loktionov is getting excellent notices in New Jersey.

Fire & Ice – Loktionov continues to impress

Devils center Andrei Loktionov continues to make key contributions and impress, scoring the tying goal with 8:38 left in regulation Saturday. Loktionov, who was acquired for a 2013 fifth-round draft pick in a Feb. 6 trade with Los Angeles and called up from Albany (AHL) on Feb. 17, has points in five consecutive games now (three goals, two assists).

“It’s nice to score goals, but if we win it would be much better,” the 22-year-old Russian said.

In his two weeks with the team, Loktionov has emerged as an important player. He has played the last two games on the top line with Ilya Kovalchuk.

“Right now, anybody that can consistently create offense for us is important and he’s the one guy the last five or six games that’s been doing that,” Devils coach Pete DeBoer said.

Loktionov clearly enjoys playing with Kovalchuk (today Stefan Matteau was the left wing on that line and set up Loktionov’s goal with a nice pass). [...] And Kovalchuk is among those impressed with how well Loktionov has played since being called up.

“He’s good, very patient with the puck, makes plays,” Kovlachuk said. “I think Pete is starting to trust him more defensively. I think it’s a really good addition for us.”

Loktionov is making the most so far of an opportunity he never received – at least not at center – from the Kings. “My game is going,” he said. “It’s very important the coaches trust me. That’s all I need.”

“He’s a good listener, a quick learner,” Kovalchuk said. “He never got a chance to play in L.A. I think it’s great that he got an opportunity to play here on the top two lines and he’s produced and showed that he can play.”

  • https://twitter.com/BobKnob2point0 Bob Knob


    • USHA#17

      The scoring column for the past two weeks has been like an indictment of talent lost…but we have a cup and a decent team. Had is name been on the cup I imagine he’d be LA’s C3 next season.

  • okto

    Like a knife to the heart

  • JamesFlagg

    Getting Top 6 minutes and a guy like Kovalchuk really opens up the ice….still not sure where he would have played in LA….

    Speaking of ex-Kings, congrats to goalkeeper Daniel Taylor, who played a single period with LA back in 2007-08; battled through the minors and the DEL and finally got his first NHL win for Calgary the other night…..

  • https://twitter.com/geoffdes78 Geoff DeSouza

    *shrug* Sometimes you lose guys because of depth. It’s an unfortunate case, but this team was re-built in a manner that didn’t require Loki to be a part of it anymore.

    My big regret to this day is that they somehow didn’t convince Philly to take him instead of Schenn. But Schenn was always the much better NHL prospect, so that probably wasn’t viable.

    • http://www.mcsorleys-stick.com/ Quisp

      Yeah, they were never taking Lokti instead of Schenn. But there isn’t room on the Kings for Schenn either.

      • https://twitter.com/BobKnob2point0 Bob Knob

        Now that I disagree with. If somehow we still had Schenn instead of Lokti I’m pretty sure we’d have Kopi/Richards/Stoll/Schenn down the middle right now. Schenn actually fits the team mold imo.

  • Uni

    Doesn’t surprise me nor does it bum me out. I like having Stoll and Fraser. I look at this situation as a case where there are intangibles we don’t even know about as fans. You’ve got leadership, friends-to-all guys in Stoll and Fraser and then you have Loktionov who was such a fish out of water he didn’t join his teammates for dinner until they spotted him and called him over.

    I’ve read many quotes from the team about how much everyone loves each other. I think I see DL’s bent on character now. The whole team is full of it and they embody the “happier for the guy next to you than yourself” ethos DL preaches. A pro hockey team is a still a workplace and when the employees are happier productivity goes up.

    No, I’m not saying Loktionov would make anyone unhappy. I’m just talking about greater cohesion. There are cancers, there are selfish dicks, and there are shy guys you have to make an effort to accommodate. Who really knows, but it sounds like the Kings are generally free of any of those. Plus, it’s good for Voynov to be on his own – forces his own continued acclimation and even English development to that much greater of a degree.

    Anyway, if you say I’m just deluding myself to keep from crying, you might be right, too. But I think there’s some truth to this.

    • http://www.mcsorleys-stick.com/ Quisp

      Probably. Also, winning tends to heal a lot of wounds. I get what you’re saying about the shy outsider, etc.. That’s kind of a nice way to put the uglier observation about some North American hockey people and their prejudice against Europeans and Russians in particular (“soft,” “enigmatic”).