• Mavs bring in hired gun to fill enforcer role

  • In the Old West, a sheriff's best friend was his trusty Colt .45.

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  • In the Old West, a sheriff's best friend was his trusty Colt .45.
    Missouri Mavericks coach Scott Hillman is hoping the same holds true this season in the Central Hockey League as forward Colt King – who just happens to wear No. 45 – is expected to give the Mavericks a presence on the ice that has been missing recently.
    “We have some big boys out on the ice,” Hillman said as he watched a recent practice session at the Independence Events Center. “And one of the most intimidating is No. 45 – there's a reason we brought Colt to Independence.
    “In the past, this team was missing a physical presence out on the ice. That is no longer the case.”
    The Mavericks had one enforcer – Carlyle “The Grim Sleeper” Lewis – but age and injuries have taken their toll on Lewis, who will likely not play this season.
    “We needed someone like Colt, and he was eager to be a part of our team,” Hillman said. “He’s already fitting in well and the boys really enjoy being around him. He’s a great addition to our team.”
    He was also the first addition to the 2012-13 Mavericks squad. King, 29, who played last season for the Steelers in Sheffield, England, helped the Rapid City Rush win the CHL’s President's Cup in 2010.
    Despite his history with the Mavericks, the local fans are already warming up to King. One fan said earlier this week, “I remember when he roughed up Carlyle when he was with Rapid City the first year the Mavs came to town. We didn't like him much then, but now we can't wait to see what he brings to this year's team.”
    King is fitting right in with his new teammates. At one recent practice he grabbed a toy helmet for a teammate who was the last to score a goal in a previous day's drill. He had to wear the new helmet until this day's drill came to an end.
    “See what you get when you take the team to Paradise Park?” quipped Hillman, referring to the Lee’s Summit kids play area the Mavericks visited the night before. “That’s good for the boys – loosens them up.”
    “I can't wait for the season to start,” said King, whose pleasant demeanor off the ice belies his rugged image on the ice. “We've had just a few practices and there is already a real chemistry on this team.
    “The guys who were here last year came close to winning a championship and all the new guys this year want to help them take it one step closer. We're all here with one goal – winning a championship. We did it in Rapid City and I believe this team can do it this year.”
    Page 2 of 2 - King and his new teammates will get their first taste of game action at 7 p.m. tonight when they play an exhibition contest against the Bloomington Blaze in Bloomington, Ill. The game will not be broadcast.

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