The NHL was scheduled to open its season Thursday night, but instead of previews, predictions and a peek at the Kings’ plans for their Stanley Cup banner-raising ceremony Friday night at Staples Center, we bring you more lockout-related news.
Isn’t that fun!
Of greatest interest to Kings fans is that backup goaltender Jonathan Bernier will join Heilbronn Falken of the German second division to stay active during the lockout, the Toronto Globe and Mail reported. That makes sense for him, considering he played so little last season.
Bernier reportedly asked the Kings to trade him a few months ago, but they were hesitant to do that because of Jonathan Quick’s back surgery. They have no other NHL-caliber backup goalies in their system and so needed to keep Bernier as insurance.
Bernier followed center Anze Kopitar (Mora IK of Sweden) and defenseman Alec Martinez (TPS Turku of Finland) to Europe to play during the lockout.
And, yes, the NHL and the players union talked in New York on Thursday, their second straight day of negotiations. But there were no immediate reasons to believe they had made any breakthroughs that would signal a resolution to the lockout the league imposed on Sept. 15. We’ll have an update later.
As for the Kings’ banner-raising ceremony, that’s on indefinite hold. The banner is ready and it’s in the Kings’ possession, but it will stay under wraps for the foreseeable future.