SUN Hockey Pool

Patrick practises patience

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:50 AM ET

There'll be plenty of familiar faces on the ice for Patrick O'Sullivan when the Los Angeles Kings pay a visit to Rexall Place tonight.

It'll be the first time the Edmonton Oilers winger will be going up against his former team.

"It'll be strange," O'Sullivan said yesterday.

"I had a lot of good friends over there. It's a weird situation and I think anybody that's ever had to go through it would say the same thing.

"But at the end of the day, it's about the game and it'll be no different than playing any other team.

"As the game gets closer, you just have to focus on preparing and doing what you need to do. You have to put the emotional side of things aside and it's something that I can worry about after.

"But it's something I'm looking forward to, for sure."

O'Sullivan, a native of Winston-Salem, N.C., was acquired by the Oilers just prior to the trade deadline in March. He was originally sent to the Carolina Hurricanes for forward Justin Williams, then was flipped to the Oilers for Erik Cole.

"I'd like to have done more offensively to this point," said O'Sullivan, who has a goal and four assists in 16 games with the Oilers.

"Sometimes it's tough coming to a new team, but I've had a number of chances and hit four or five posts since I've been here. I think for me, though, it's something that I can't worry too much about.

" I think I can help the team win in other ways, be good defensively, help kill penalties, worry about those other things, and not let the fact that I'm not scoring affect my game."

O'Sullivan, 24, was originally selected by the Minnesota Wild in the second round - 56th overall - of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft, but shortly thereafter was swapped to the Kings for Pavol Demitra.

O'Sullivan spent parts of three seasons with the Kings. Prior to coming here, he had 14 goals and 23 assists in 62 games with Los Angeles.

"I'm feeling good lately playing with Sam (Gagner) and Robert (Nilsson)," O'Sullivan said.

"I think we all kind of play the same style. We're obviously not very big, so we have to use our speed and our skating and protect the puck in the offensive zone.

"In the last couple of games I think we've done that and we've had a lot of good chances. I like playing with those two guys."


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