Kings' Clifford practices, status for G4 unknown
Los Angeles Kings left wing Kyle Clifford took part in the team's optional practice Sunday morning but his availability for Tuesday's Game 4 against the San Jose Sharks is still unknown.
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Los Angeles Kings left wing Kyle Clifford took part in the team's optional practice Sunday morning, but his availability for Tuesday's Game 4 against the San Jose Sharks remains unknown.
Clifford, who suffered an undisclosed injury against the St. Louis Blues in the first round, has missed the last four playoff games. Clifford also took part in Friday's practice. He did not wear the red no-contact jersey then or Sunday.
Kings coach Daryl Sutter would not say if Clifford would play Tuesday or later in this series.
The status of Kings center Jarret Stoll, who suffered an upper-body injury after a hit by Sharks left wing Raffi Torres in Game 1, is even more uncertain. Stoll did not skate Sunday and has not taken the ice or spoken to the media after being knocked out of the opening game of the series.
"Well, Clifford is out there practicing, and Jarret is not," Sutter said. "So you have the same thing that I have. If Jarret is not practicing, it means he is following protocol. Cliffy is practicing, which means he has got the next step."
Sharks coach Todd McLellan ruled Martin Havlat out for Game 4, saying the winger is injured again (lower body).
Havlat returned Saturday night after missing five games but lasted only one period.
"Marty is injured again," McLellan said Sunday in San Jose.
Sharks star center Logan Couture, who battled back from a leg injury Saturday night to score the overtime winner in Game 3, said he was good to go for Game 4 Tuesday. Meanwhile, Sharks winger Adam Burish (hand injury) told ESPN.com Sunday that he hopes to come back before the end of the series.
"I'm day to day," he said.
The Sharks had announced before the second round that Burish wouldn't be available for the entire series but the veteran winger is trying to push himself back before then.
The Kings returned to Los Angeles late Saturday night after their 2-1 overtime loss in Game 3. They practiced Sunday and will go through another practice on Monday before getting on a flight to San Jose for Tuesday's game. Sutter said taking care of his injured players at home was a big reason for the decision to return to Los Angeles in between games.
"I'm trying to get some guys healed up," Sutter said. "It's not easy. It gives the players more time."
Most of the Kings were still upset with the ending of Saturday's game, in which they felt a couple of key calls late tipped the result in the favor of San Jose. Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr was called for a hooking penalty with 41.7 seconds left in regulation and then Kings center Trevor Lewis was called for goaltender interference with 4.5 seconds to go.
Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick also got a game misconduct for arguing with officials after allowing the game-winning goal in overtime.
"The calls were made and I don't think any team is happy with calls," Kings captain Dustin Brown said. "But it's our job to get it killed. We did a really good job on the 5-on-3, and then they found a way to get a point-blank shot on [Quick], so it's a matter of getting it cleaned up."
Information from ESPN.com's Pierre LeBrun was used in this report.
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