The Los Angeles Kings will be heading to China to play two preseason games in just over a week, but Marian Gaborik won’t be going with them. Head coach John Stevens confirmed as much to Jon Rosen of LA Kings Insider, saying that Gaborik would remain in Los Angeles to continue working on his knee rehab. Gaborik underwent a “non-surgical” procedure on his knee in August, and will try to return at some point in camp.
Stevens did say that Gaborik had been skating already, and that he’s working extremely hard to get back to the point where he can return to practice. The 35-year old has put up just 43 points over the last two seasons combined, but some of that could have to do with the chronic knee injury. If it’s fixed, perhaps some of his noticable decline in speed will be mitigated and he can reclaim some of his goal-scoring prowess. If not, it could be a long four years—the time left on his current contract—for the Kings.
- Darren Dreger of TSN is reporting that the Calgary Flames have invited Dylan Olsen to training camp on a professional tryout, bringing him back to the NHL for at least a short while. After being selected in the first round and playing 124 NHL contests, Olsen spent last year in a Senior A circuit away from professional hockey. The left-handed defenseman is now 26, and could potentially earn a minor league deal if shows any semblance of his former self. It’s hard to imagine he’ll ever see the NHL, but stranger things have happened in the past.
- Bob McKenzie of TSN released his annual preseason draft prospect rankings, and like most lists Rasmus Dahlin is at the very top. The Swedish defender has a game that brings both incredible offensive upside and enough strength and size to make him a potential franchise player. Though he’ll have top forwards like Andrei Svechnikov and Brady Tkachuk to fend off—McKenzie’s number two and three prospects—Dahlin could become the first Swedish-born player to go first overall since Mats Sundin in 1989. He’ll play for Frolunda this year in the SHL.