Kings need more than just Sutter

Updated: December 19, 2011, 11:35 AM ET
By Craig Custance

It was Friday afternoon and Dean Lombardi sat down next to Drew Doughty for a short chat. Lombardi was wearing a red sweater that earned him plenty of ribbing since the Kings were set to face the Detroit Red Wings following L.A.'s gutsy win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Kings GM had a defense, though -- it is nearly Christmas. Plus, he's colorblind.

Doughty and Lombardi were once adversaries in a summerlong contract negotiation that resulted in a holdout for the franchise defenseman that most certainly contributed to the Kings' disjointed start this season. They're also the two who can help turn things around the most in Los Angeles.

It looked like a friendly chat, but if Doughty was hoping for some inside information on the next coach during that conversation, he didn't get it.

"We just talked about last night's game, stuff like that," Doughty said.

As for the coaching situation, Doughty and his teammates were in the dark.

"We have no clue, to be honest. No idea whatsoever," he said on Friday. "You hear rumors, [Darryl] Sutter coming in, but that's through the media. We have no idea what's going to happen."

The picture became a little clearer over the weekend. Sutter has a deal with the Kings and his immigration issues are expected to be cleared up today. According to an NHL source, the whole thing will be settled by Tuesday, with Sutter making his Kings coaching debut on Thursday against the Ducks.

It's been a process, but a Kings source said it's one that "will become clearer when [the] announcement [is] made."