Kings announced today that goalie Jonathan Bernier has been sent back down to Manchester of the AHL.
With all the talk about No. 1 goalie Jonathan Quick not being as sharp as he was before the Olympic break, this sends several strong messages:
1. Quick is going to be THE guy in the playoffs for the Kings -- as he should be. He has won 40 games. He got the Kings where they are. He deserves it.
2. But if he falters, the Kings know Bernier is there and can be called back up.
This allows Quick to move ahead, stay focused, regain the confidence and level of play that he had earlier in the season, and not have to be distracted by the idea that if he stumbles, the guy who's going to slide in to take his spot is sitting at the end of the bench.
Quick will start his pre-playoff stint Saturday night at Staples Center against the Ducks. The hope is the Kings will lock up a playoff spot soon and have a revitalized and confident Quick ready to lead them a long way once the playoffs start.
More on this over the weekend.