The news on forward Mike Richards took a small turn for the worse, as the Kings have placed him on the Injured Reserve with his lower-body injury. Richards suffered the injury on Thursday night against the Florida Panthers, not returning to the game. Now that Richards has been placed on the IR, he will have to miss at least the next week of action, which would make him eligible to return to the line-up on December 9th.
Richards has been a very important part of the Kings offense in the early part of the season, having 11 goals and 9 assists in the first 25 games of the year, which had him ranked 57th in scoring before play started on Friday night. Missing out on a week will likely mean he'll be out for four games, but of course, that is on the low end of the scale, as there has been no real confirmation of when he will comeback.
On the plus side, of sorts, the Kings will welcome Dustin Penner back to the line-up, as they activated him from the IR on Friday afternoon, the same time they placed Richards on the list. Penner has been out since the middle of November with a hand injury. Unfortunately, his numbers that he left the line-up with have not given anyone any confidence that he will make a big impact on the team, but I don't think you can really count out the possibility that he may be a bit more refreshed and he could be coming back with a better idea of how the team plays.
Well, Stuart G. sees all the draft pool action from this news byte. He has both Richards and Penner, but he only has Penner for another couple days, as he was the first drop from his draft team this week, improving to Luke Adam of the Sabres in the process. There was no confidence that Penner was going to make a big impact in Los Angeles upon his return.
At the time of Penner's injury, Stuart was in 3rd place in the standings, only 4 points of 2nd place, but a few weeks away has seen him drop down to 5th spot, 4 points back of 3rd place and 7 points back of 2nd, but with waiver draft improvements and the loss of Richards, it's hard to tell how good Stuart's team is really going to be.