It took nearly nine minutes into his opening training camp media session Thursday for Kings Coach Darryl Sutter to utter one of his favorite words.
Sutter used that in relation to the possibility of one of the young forward prospects — Linden Vey, Tanner Pearson or Tyler Toffoli — emerging in camp. "If one of them jumps out, awesome," Sutter said.
Even before Sutter got to that place, he was upbeat in what he guessed was his 35th training camp in the NHL (combining his playing and coaching days). This is his first full camp with the Kings because of last season's lockout.
"Obviously, a big difference," Sutter said. "If we had training camp last year, it was pretty well set, other than [defenseman] Willie [Mitchell]. Our team was set. This is a big difference. There's not minor changes. There's guys that are clearly playing for spots."
Sutter talked about being "very cautious" with Mitchell, who missed all of last season with an injured knee, and giving left wing Matt Frattin an extended look on a line with Mike Richards and right wing Jeff Carter.
Sutter also addressed the competition for the No. 2 goalie spot between Ben Scrivens and Mathieu Garon, who is in camp on a tryout basis.
Garon "is going to get every opportunity," Sutter said. "And obviously, coaches have to show confidence in three or four guys there — we'll let them sort it out. He'll get the opportunity. The only thing as a coach is nobody is going to leave here and say they weren't given the opportunity."
The first preseason action is a split-squad affair Sunday. Sutter is planning to go to the game at Phoenix, rather than Staples Center. "Get out of Dodge for a day," he said.
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