Kings' GM Rob Blake looks toward resuming season, regardless of playoff standings

The Los Angeles Kings might be out of playoff contention, but general manager Rob Blake says there’s still a push to resume the season.

Despite being on a seven-game winning streak when the season was suspended on March 12 due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Kings are still 14 points behind the Nashville Predators and Vancouver Canucks for the second wild card in the Western Conference -- but Blake says that's no reason that the team should have any less interest in resuming the current season.

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“There’s so many different scenarios that have been floated out there, but the message to our guys is try to keep the same mindset,” Blake told reporters during a video conference Wednesday, the Los Angeles Times reported. “There are still games to be played.”

He added: “We will find positives by playing those games, that’s our mentality. It’s expected of us.”

There are still 189 regular-season games left to play. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has maintained that the best thing to do would be to finish out the season before starting the playoffs, although he said that might not be possible.

NHL MULLS START OF PHASE 2 OF RETURN PLAN, INCLUDING ‘SMALL GROUP ACTIVITIES,’ IN A FEW WEEKS

Despite speaking cautiously about a timetable, the league announced this week plans to transition to Phase 2 of resuming the season, which could come sometime in mid- to late May.

“The precise date of transition to Phase 2, during which Players might return to small group activities in NHL Club training facilities, remains undetermined,” the NHL said in a statement.

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“However, provided that conditions continue to trend favorably -- and, subject to potential competitive concerns as between disparately situated markets -- we believe we may be able to move to Phase 2 at some point in the mid-to-later portion of May.”