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In stitches: Anze Kopitar will gladly sacrifice modeling career for LA Kings' playoff success

  • 0a2d44f08a251410320f6a706700c2c3.jpg

    Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar, of Slovenia,, left, is helped off the ice after getting hit in the face with a puck against the San Jose Sharks during the third period in Game 2 of their second-round NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoff series, Thursday, May 16, 2013, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) (The Associated Press)

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    Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar, of Slovenia,, right, celebrates their win with goalie Jonathan Quick in Game 2 of their second-round NHL hockey Stanley Cup playoff series, Thursday, May 16, 2013, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill) (The Associated Press)

Anze Kopitar won't allow a puck to the face to keep him out of the Los Angeles Kings' title defense.

Kopitar missed only a few minutes of the Kings' 4-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night after a third-period shot by teammate Dustin Brown hit him in the left side of his face above his upper lip.

After roughly 20 stitches and an uncomfortable night of sleep, Kopitar returned to practice at the Kings' training complex on Friday. He says he's ready to play in Game 3 on Saturday night at the Shark Tank.

Kopitar was the Kings' leading scorer for the sixth consecutive regular season, scoring 42 points in 47 games. The Slovenian center has just one goal and three assists in eight playoff games.