Fathers of Kings players get a taste of what life on the road is like

SAN JOSE — Mike Richards enjoys having his father, Norm, come along on the Kings' annual fathers' trip — and not only because he usually plays well when his dad is around.

With his dad, 16 other players' fathers and Jordan Nolan's brother, Brandon, in the house, Richards brought the Kings even late in the third period of their eventual 3-2 overtime victory Monday at Vancouver. Richards considered it a small repayment for the sacrifices his father and his mother, Irene, had made to help him realize his dreams.

"I love having him around," Richards said Tuesday while some players participated in an optional practice at SAP Arena. "He loves coming on the road, getting together with the other dads. He just loves being at the rink and following us around. I think last night he was tired after a long trip. He's probably not used to all that traveling and getting in late to the hotels.

"It's no secret how much he's meant to my hockey career. Pretty much one of the only reasons I'm here is him and my mum."

Norm Richards watched Tuesday's session at rink-side next to Gino Carcillo, father of winger Daniel Carcillo. Both made similar trips with their sons' previous teams, but this itinerary is new.

"It's been good," said Norm Richards, who lives in Kenora, Canada, but has rented a home in Southern California the last few winters. "I'm seeing different parts of the country than I would normally see."

Gino Carcillo, who lives in Toronto, made his first trip to Los Angeles to meet the group for the start of this trip. He said their seats in Vancouver were so high "we could touch the rafters," but togetherness counts more than the vantage point.

"Each team has a little bit different trip setup with the boys but all in all they're great trips," he said. "You get to meet a lot of good dads, and the coaching staff and people you've grown up watching. It's amazing."

Enlightening too. "They get to see what we go through on a daily basis," Daniel Carcillo said. "I think a lot of the perception out there is that it's all roses, and they get to see that we get in at 3:30 last night and have to be up and go on today. They obviously all enjoy it."

Carter's morning after

Forward Jeff Carter said his foot felt good Tuesday, a day after he returned from an injury that forced him to miss 10 games. Carter, who set up Richards' goal, said he needed several shifts to get his timing back but added, "I felt stronger as the game went on … It's going to be tender and my legs are going to be burning and whatnot, but it's what I expected."


When: 7:30.

On the air: TV: Fox Sports West; Radio: 1150.

Etc.: The Kings have earned standings points in 10 straight games (7-0-3). The club record is 11, done twice. Goaltender Ben Scrivens, who's expected to start, leads the NHL in goals-against average (1.44), save percentage (.947) and shutouts (three). The Kings won their first meeting with the Sharks this season, 4-3, in overtime, on Oct. 30 at Staples Center. The Sharks, 7-1-2 at SAP Center, have won five of their last six games.

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