Quick Trip Down Memory Lane
Most know him as No.32 and the starting goaltender for the 2012 Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings. Monarchs Country remembers Jonathan Quick wearing No. 29 with the Manchester Monarchs well before winning the 2012 Conn Smythe Trophy (awarded to the most valuable player in the playoffs) and becoming one of the best goaltenders in the National Hockey League.
For the last two weeks, Quick has been practicing and working out with his old team in Manchester despite the NHL lockout. The reason Quick is allowed to come back to Manchester is because prior to the lockout, he required back surgery and was placed on the injured reserve list. Therefore, Quick is able to rehab on a conditioning basis with Manchester but is not allowed to play in any games for the Monarchs. Coming to Manchester has given Quick the chance to get his legs back under him after not being able to be on the ice for four months.
“It’s great; obviously, at first you are just trying to get your legs under you and now I think I have done a good job at that,” said Quick. “Now it is trying to find things that you need to work on and there is a limit to that. You don’t want to overdue it and (you) try not to re-injure yourself. So, you know, you try to find that line and get up to it as close as you can without going over it. But it’s great. There is a great group here. I am fortunate to be able to come here and skate with these guys.”
Quick is familiar with many players on this year’s Monarchs squad. Last season, Quick played with right wing Jordan Nolan, left wing Dwight King, center Andrei Loktionov and defenseman Slava Voynov while they were with the Kings. There are also a few players still on the Monarchs roster from when Quick he suited up for Manchester. Right wing David Meckler, left wing Richard Clune and left wing Marc-Andre Cliche were all teammates of Quick’s in Manchester.
Cliche is the Monarchs captain for the third straight year and is expected to appear in his 300th Monarchs game on Friday, November 23 against the Worcester Sharks. In the eyes of Quick, Cliche is the perfect fit for the job.
“He does a lot of the little things and he does them really well,” said Quick of Cliche. “You see him in the (penalty kill) blocking shots and sacrificing himself and obviously his locker room presence is great. He is great with the young guys and he knows the game and he knows the system. He has been a part of this organization for a while so he knows the city well. I can't think of anyone better to be the captain here.”
Quick played for the Monarchs during the 2007-09 seasons posting a 17-13-2 record to go along with a 2.48 goal-against-average and a 0.921 save percentage in 33 games. It had been a few years since Quick had been on the ice in Manchester but it still felt familiar to him.
“You think of the group of guys that you played with (in Manchester),” said Quick. “You think back to four years ago or so and where a lot of those guys are now. A bunch of them are playing in the National Hockey League either with the Kings or with different organizations. You see all the young guys here and the Kings do a great job of getting guys ready to play in the (NHL) and you kind of wonder actually how many of these guys will be playing there and where they will play, hopefully with the Kings, but you never know.”
Once the lockout ends, Quick will be back with the Kings looking to defend their Stanley Cup Championship but he will always be No. 29 to Monarchs Country.