The workload for a goaltender -- or lack of one -- is always going to be a question for the Kings’ No. 2 man.
Kings starter Jonathan Quick, the playoff MVP last year, appeared in 37 of 48 regular-season games in this past lockout-shortened season. The season before that, there were 69 appearances by Quick over the 82-game season schedule.
Now, new backup Ben Scrivens will be dealing with the same issue that Jonathan Bernier had to handle through the past three seasons in Los Angeles. On Sunday, the Kings traded Bernier to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for winger Matt Frattin, Scrivens and a future draft pick.
“That’s the problem no matter where you go,” Scrivens said Monday. “Everybody wants to be the guy, everybody wants to be the No. 1. Obviously, I’m still a young guy in the league. For me to come in behind Quickie and learn as much as I can from him and work with [goalie coach] Billy Ranford, it’s a great opportunity, but also a great challenge.”
Scrivens and Frattin were spending the day in the area, going through routine medical testing and meeting some of the team’s staff over at Kings’ headquarters in El Segundo. At least Scrivens has gone through this sort of thing in the past, in regard to playing time.
“That was my role in Toronto by the end of the year, trying to push James [Reimer] for ice time and for starts,” he said. “I really don’t see it as too much of change coming to L.A. You have to earn every minute you get on the ice. But saying that, the better you play, the more chances you get. Hopefully I can provide a good counterpunch when Quickie needs a break.
“Hopefully I can force the coaching staff to [make] a difficult decision and how often they want to play me because I’m playing well. That’s all you can do and that’s all I’m going to focus on.”
Frattin was notified about the trade on Sunday by Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis, and Scrivens, who was in Toronto, heard from Toronto’s assistant GM Claude Loiselle. Loiselle, in fact, scouted the Kings fairly frequently during the lockout-shortened season.
Frattin has had periodic knee issues but said he felt it was 100% in the playoffs. The Kings have spoken about his speed and versatility and he could help fill their immense void on the left wide.
“I played a few games with Toronto on the left side,” Frattin said. “I’m definitely comfortable over there but my strong side is my right side.”
Kings General Manager Dean Lombardi said when he made the deal that he had tried to trade for Frattin two years ago.
“That’s definitely exciting, knowing that the team that just traded for you definitely wanted you for the past couple of years,” Frattin said. “I’m excited for an opportunity wherever they slot me in. That’s where I’m going to try to play my best.”
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