The Los Angeles Kings have activated both Brendan Lemieux and Matt Roy from injured reserve, giving them some reinforcements for an important game tonight against the Edmonton Oilers. Because it is past the trade deadline, the team is not limited by a 23-man roster anymore, meaning corresponding moves aren’t necessarily required.
Lemieux, 26, last played over a month ago, leaving a game against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the first period and landing on the shelf. The bang-and-crash winger has recorded eight goals and 11 points in 44 games this season, racking up 86 penalty minutes and 108 hits along the way. Notably, he also missed time with a five-game suspension for biting, during an altercation with Ottawa Senators captain Brady Tkachuk.
While he doesn’t provide a ton of offense, Lemieux does give them another bottom-six option to work with while they chase a Pacific Division playoff spot, something that certainly isn’t guaranteed after some recent scuffles.
Roy, 27, is the much bigger addition, returning after several weeks on the sideline himself. In each of the two games before he suffered an injury, Roy had actually logged nearly 27 minutes of ice time, stepping into a huge role with so many other Kings’ defenders on the injured list. Overall, the seventh-round pick has put together quite the season for himself, averaging close to 21 minutes a night through 58 games and registering 17 points.
He’s not the flashiest player, but given how many injuries the Kings have dealt with on the back end, Roy’s return will be a welcome sight. He practiced on the top pairing with Sean Durzi yesterday, though things could obviously be switched in his first game back given how long he’s been out.