The Los Angeles Kings have recalled both Paul LaDue and Matt Luff from the minor leagues ahead of their game against the New York Islanders tonight. To make room, the team has sent Carl Grundstrom to the AHL and placed Alec Martinez on injured reserve. The team has also placed Derek Forbort on long-term injured reserve while assigning him to the AHL on a conditioning stint.
While LaDue and Luff coming up is no surprise, the demotion of Grundstrom may perk up some eyebrows after he got into the lineup the last several games. The 21-year old forward is still looking for his first goal this season but does have four points in nine games despite averaging just over 13 minutes of ice time. Acquired as part of the package for Jake Muzzin last season, Grundstrom represents a real part of the Kings’ future up front and has shown a strong ability to contribute offensively at the NHL level so far.
Forbort’s assignment is the real news here though, as the veteran defenseman gets closer to a return after a back injury stole the first part of the season. The 27-year old has turned into a trusty partner for Drew Doughty over the last three seasons and is an important part of their group, but is also one of the team’s best trade chips if they decide to move him at the deadline. Forbort is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in the summer and if the Kings want to open more room for younger options during their rebuild, he could fetch a pretty penny after showing he’s healthy and back to full strength.