Kings’ Kopitar will undergo ankle surgery


The Los Angeles Kings’ chances of lifting the Stanley Cup this coming June took a significant hit when their best player, Anze Kopitar, suffered  torn ligaments and a badly sprained ankle. Kopitar, who leads the offensive charge with 25 goals and 73 points this year, suffered the injury last weekend in a game against the Colorado Avalanche. He became tangled up with defenceman,  Ryan O’Byrne, and fell on his ankle in an awkward fashion. Two days later an MRI revealed that Kopitar, who had played 330 straight games, would need surgery on, what the Kings were calling, a high ankle sprain. “There’s quite a hole  going to be there now; with him out of the lineup for some length of time,” said Kings’ coach, Terry Murray. “But I’ve been through these kinds of things before, with top guys being out because of injuries. The character of the team needs to step up. ” Besides Kopitar, the Kings, who are tied with the Nashville Predators for fifth in the Western Conference, have also lost another top scorer, Justin Williams. Williams, who had 57 points on the season, injured his shoulder earlier this month against the Calgary Flames. He is scheduled to miss at least two more weeks; while Kopitar will miss at least five to six weeks.


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