Crowned Royal Exclusive Interview with Terry Murray
After Saturday night’s loss to the Blackhawks, Los Angeles Kings fans are starting to more vigorously scratch their heads, especially after discovering Terry Murray’s new lineup strategy for Monday’s game against the Sharks. This Kings team is a tough one to figure out, looking unbeatable some nights, and like they could lose to a 50-and-older rec league roster other nights.
The lineup has significant new cogs in place this season, and some growing pains are reasonably expected. As Dean Lombardi said, it’s really not fair to judge the team until the 20 game mark.
It’s been 23 games and the Kings sit in a disappointing 4th in the Pacific Division and 10th in the Western Conference with 26 points.
Some are placing the blame on Kings’ head coach Terry Murray. Amidst the tension, we were lucky enough to
corner Murray in a dark alley and interrogate him catch up with Murray and ask a few questions:
Coach, thank you for taking some time with us today.
- Who did you say you were again?
I didn’t. First question. How would you rate the team’s performance so far this season?
- This is a tough league, and our division especially, the Smythe Division, is very competitive.
Uh, I see. So would you say the team has met your expectations so far?
- Well, we are tops in the league in goals against as well as shots taken, so I’m pretty happy with our performance so far.
What would you say the team could improve?
- We need to play a better team defensive game And we need to have a better shot mentality. More pucks to the net.
But you said-
- Look at a guy like Sheldon Souray. Top 10 scorer in this league, I’m fairly certain. All he does it shoot any time he crosses the red line. And their team is in first place, I think. It’s like Wayne Gretzky said: you lose 100 percent of the games you don’t out shoot your opponent. So smart. That kid is going to be a star in this league.
It’s well documented that you like to shuffle lines. This new shake up has a lot of people scratching their heads.
- I know I can’t believe I’m keeping one of the lines together either.
I guess I should be more specific. Let’s start with Loktionov. You have him back at center.
- Yes. The kid just passes too much to play winger for me. I don’t know what his problem is, but as soon as Penner comes back, he is on the next plane to Manchester.
What is it about Penner’s game that you like more than Loktionov’s?
- His size. He’s a big man out there. I love his bruteness. And he has a great mustache.
And on the second line you’re trying Jarret Stoll on the wing.
- If I could have Jarret Stoll on every line I would. This is one player that can follow directions. He gets the puck anywhere past the red line, he’s gonna shoot it in the general direction of the goal sort of. Makes me all tingly just thinking about it.
And that brings me to Trent Hunter. You thought highly enough of his game To put him on the top line.
- Hunter was our best forward on Saturday. He had two great scoring chances that he was able to put in the direction of the net. Plus he chased the puck and got his stick on it a few times. Best forward we had.
A few coaches overseeing struggling teams have already been fired this season. Is this shakeup any indication of worry on your part?
- It’s not my fault they’re not shooting.
Some say that in today’s NHL, it takes more than just shooting the puck to win games.
- People say a lot of crazy things. Some people say that it could be possible, right here where I’m standing, to take a photograph of myself, magically shoot it into space, and somehow show it to millions of people in the same day. First of all, everyone knows it takes at least a week to get photographs developed.
Sir, that is possible.
- You sound just like my young players. I will say to you what I say to them- did you ever play for the California Golden Seals? I think not.
He’s got me there.