By Don Stewart
READING, Pa. – Danny Taylor admitted he was a little tired.
The 21-year-old goalie made his NHL debut Saturday in the third period of Los Angeles’ 7-2 loss to Dallas. He then hopped on a red-eye flight at 1:30 a.m., arrived in Pennsylvania at 6:30 a.m., and was dressed and ready to go for the Reading Royals Sunday night at the Sovereign Center.
“These guys here played five games in six nights,” Taylor said, “so I’m kind of right up to speed with their fatigue.”
Taylor appeared in three games with the Royals back in December. The Kings told him Saturday night they wanted him to play in two more so that he’d be eligible for the ECHL playoffs.
Los Angeles’ next game is Tuesday, and Taylor could be rushed back to the West Coast in time to back up Erik Ersberg if injured Dan Cloutier isn’t ready to go.
“There’s a chance,” he said. “We’ll see what happens. I’ll keep my phone on. But if I have to stay here, then I’ll definitely give 100 percent to Reading and enjoy being here, too.”
Taylor, who is 3-0-0 for Reading and 13-5-2 for the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs, made eight saves on 10 shots Saturday for the Kings. He was on the ice for 1:24 of the first period Sunday and didn’t see any shots in Reading’s 3-2 loss to Cincinnati.
“There’s a difference, there’s definitely a difference,” he said. “Either way, you have to be professional about it. You still have to bring your best effort. It doesn’t matter what league you’re in, you have to bring your ‘A’ game.”