The Los Angeles Kings have leaned heavily on goalie Jonathan Quick to capture two Stanley Cups in the past three NHL postseasons. In their most recent championship run, Quick was playing through a wrist injury.
Greg Beacham of the Associated Press reports that Quick is undergoing surgery Tuesday to address the ailment:
The Canadian Press' Stephen Whyno noted that the injury took place in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, when the Kings faced off against the Anaheim Ducks:
Quick registered a 2.07 GAA in the 2013-14 regular season to help carry a Los Angeles team that was 26th in the NHL in scoring to the playoffs. From there, it was an extraordinary display from the Kings, who saw several players step up when it mattered most, including Quick between the pipes.
Seth Rorabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette noted the elite American company Quick has already joined at age 28:
Quick's GAA swelled to 2.58 in the postseason. However, he stood strong in a myriad of clutch situations, particularly in helping L.A. claim victory in three overtime games over the New York Rangers in the Stanley Cup Final.
In the lone Kings Cup win that didn't go to extra time, Quick shut out the Rangers in Madison Square Garden in Game 3. Defenseman Drew Doughty was thankful to have Quick on his side, as he mentioned afterward.
"He was unbelievable tonight," said Drew Doughty, per USA Today's Kevin Allen. "I thought it was his best game of the playoffs. ... They could have easily gotten back in the playoffs if not for some of the saves he made."
Imagine what Quick could have done in the playoffs if he was at 100 percent. The higher postseason goals-against average can also be excused in part to Quick's wrist, so that should further bolster his legend. It's still a bit difficult to tell the severity of it, but it did need to be operated on.
Since this injury is happening in the offseason, it stands to reason that Quick should be back in time for the 2014-15 campaign barring a setback. Hockey players are innately tough, and for Quick to still face pucks flying his way facing an inordinate amount of pressure and expectations shows he is elite material. Kings fans should be appreciative of him as much as ever considering he played through a rather severe health situation and still delivered them the NHL's grandest prize.
As long as Los Angeles has Quick minding the net and its strong nucleus sticks together, there's no telling how many titles the Kings can win in the coming years.