Jonathan Quick Leaves Opening Night with Lower Body Injury

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LAS VEGAS, NV - OCTOBER 08: Goaltender Jonathan Quick #32 of the Los Angeles Kings tends net during a preseason game against the Colorado Avalanche at T-Mobile Arena on October 8, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Colorado won 2-1 in overtime. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings’ all-star goalie, didn’t play in the second and third period of Wednesday’s opening night game, against the San Jose Sharks. The Sharks topped the Kings 2-1 in the game, Quick let in one of those goals.

Jonathan Quick Leaves Opening Night with Lower Body Injury

The injury wasn’t specified, all that’s known is it was a lower body injury, and it most likely happened during the last shift of the first period. “He got hurt sliding… I couldn’t tell if it was that play. All the trainers said he did it sliding,” said coach Darryl Sutter. Kings general manager Dean Lombardi said Quick has an MRI scheduled for Thursday, and that he believes the injury isn’t a good one.

Sutter doesn’t seem too worried, though as he spoke to the LA Times post game. “It’s not that big a deal. We’ve got two or three goalies. Good ones,” he added. He’s referring to Jeff Zatkoff, who came in after Quick was injured and only let in one goal. Peter Budaj, who’s had starts in ten different NHL seasons, will most likely be called up to backup Zatkoff, who should get the starting role in Quick’s abscence.

A Look at Jeff Zatkoff

Zatkoff got his name out there, during the 2016 playoffs, with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Although Matt Murray was the real breakout player, Zatkoff also had a few good playoff games while Marc-Andre Fleury was hurt. When the Penguins didn’t re-sign Zatkoff, the Kings jumped on the chance to get a perfectly capable backup goalie.

Zatkoff has started in a total of 29 games, and played in 36 games total, all with the Penguins. In those games he has a total record of 16-15-3. He has a career save percentage of .915 and an average goals against of 2.64.

What he wanted out of this season was the chance to be a reliable backup. He can see a good amount of games compared to the small amount he’s seen over his three seasons in Pittsburgh. However, he might have the opportunity to get a few games in before we actually know what’s wrong with Quick. He’ll have even more starts after that. Budaj isn’t the worst backup option for the Kings. He’s used to a backup role, and has to be excited considering his alternative was being the AHL starter.

Although the injury isn’t ideal for the Kings, they shouldn’t struggle too much. It’s also a really good chance for Jeff Zatkoff to finally get the NHL playing time.

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