Tough Test Ahead

Nov 4, 2010; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell (33) and Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Steve Downie (9) fight in the third period at the Staples Center. Photo via Newscom

The Kings will face a significant test over the next month with some injuries that are sure to be a challenge. Willie Mitchell will miss 4 to 6 weeks after he suffered a fractured wrist during the Nashville game on Saturday. it was a big win, but now they’ll have to deal with a big loss. Mitchell has been a centerpiece of the highly successful penalty kill during their strong start to the season, and will be missed.

The other injury, suffered in the same game (rough night for the Kings apparently), is Alexei Ponikarovsky, who broke a finger and is scheduled to be out around 4 weeks to heal. It’s another blow to the Kings, and something that, while not devastating, will certainly hurt their offensive depth. One of the strengths of the team has been the ability to roll at least three solid lines with scoring potential, and Ponikarovsky has been a part of that to be sure.

Fortunately neither player should need surgery, which could hasten their recovery, but regardless, the Kings depth will certainly be tested with these losses. How will the Kings respond? The next few games will surely tell us. In the meantime, who will replace these guys on the roster?

Tags: Alexei Ponikarovsky Los Angeles Kings Nashville Predators Willie Mitchell