After getting stonewalled in the dragged-out pursuit of free agent Ilya Kovalchuk last summer, and then watching Alexander Frolov leave for a one-year deal with the New York Rangers, the Kings turned to free agent Alexei Ponikarovsky in hopes he could provide the big body needed at left wing.
Ponikarovsky, who averaged close to 19 goals and 46 points the last six seasons, most of which was spent in Toronto, got off to a low start with the Kings, totaling just two goals and two assists in the first 13 games.
He then broke his left ring finger Nov. 6 against Nashville and missed the next 12 games. He’s set to return Thursday against the visiting Calgary Flames and hopefully provide a boost for a team that went 5-7 while he was out of the lineup.
Ponikarovsky sat down with ESPNLosAngeles after practice Wednesday and answered a few questions, such as his most memorable hockey moment (and momento), favorite NHL player growing up and what changes he would make if he were commissioner for a day.
Here’s what he had to say.