Andrej Sekera brings consistency to Kings' defensive group
Andrej Sekera might not be flashy like Los Angeles, but you could say the same for the Kings team he's joining.
The newly acquired defensemen says his game isn't much more than hard work and consistent play. And consistency is exactly what the Kings need right now as they're firmly back in the playoff hunt. Sekera hasn't been briefed by coach Darryl Sutter yet, but that much he understands about his new team.
"It's a high-end club and losing isn't an option here," Sekera said Thursday night at Staples Center, in between periods of the Kings game against the Ottawa Senators. "It's great to be in an environment like that."
The 28-year-old Slovakian defenseman the Kings received in a trade from Carolina was one of the bigger names on the market with the trade deadline approaching. He describes himself as "small" and "skinny," but the left-hander is a smooth puck handler who's able to play on both sides of the ice and both ends of the ice.
"I play responsible in the d-zone and if there's an opening, try to help offensively," he said. "It's a simple game, nothing special."
Sekera knows he will be playing in Friday's Freeway Faceoff game in Anaheim, although he hasn't yet talked about what his role will be or who his defense partner will be. The details can be worked out in Friday's morning skate at the Honda Center. He previously played with Robyn Regehr in Buffalo and has received a briefing from the Kings' veteran defenseman, as well as his countryman, Marian Gaborik.
Having played only in the Eastern Conference in his nine seasons in the NHL, Sekera isn't exceptionally familiar with the Kings organization. He knowsthe Kings are in the midst of a playoff chase and that those chases typically lead to big things. With just two postseasons under his belt and absent from the last three, he's anxious to contribute and be a part of team that he feels suits his style of play.
"The weather is nice here, but so is a high-tempo game," he said. "They play a high temp from the first minute until the last. They've got a pretty good team and it's always tough to play against guys like that."
Gaborik will have the honors of showing him around the South Bay. He'll be living with Gaborik in Manhattan Beach, at the winger's brand new, $5.55 million beach house. Sekera promises he's a low-maintenance roommate.
"I'm an easy-going guy," he said. "I don't need much to be alive, just a little water, oxygen, bread and butter and I'm fine."
No word on whether Sekera will get to drive one of Gaborik's sports cars.