COLUMBUS, Ohio — A relieved Joe Corvo flew back to Los Angeles with the rest of the Kings late Thursday night after the trip finale against the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The rookie defenseman had been scheduled to appear in Boston Municipal Court this morning for a pretrial hearing on charges that he sexually assaulted and attacked a woman in November while playing for the Kings' top minor league team.
The hearing was still scheduled, but Corvo's attorney, Charles Clifford of Charlestown, Mass., was granted a motion this week to waive Corvo's appearance.
Despite the cloud hanging over him, Corvo, 25, has had a solid season. He has scored five goals, more than any other rookie defenseman.
"It's just something that I have to deal with," the Oak Park (Ill.) native said of the felony charges against him, the most serious of which could land him in state prison for 10 years.
Corvo pleaded not guilty after his arrest Nov. 13.
Brad Chartrand was put on injured reserve because of a back strain.... Ken Belanger, sidelined since Nov. 5 because of a concussion, is expected to be ready to return to practice during a five-game homestand that starts Saturday....Brad Norton played only 32 seconds Thursday night because of stiffness in his right shoulder and neck after tripping and crashing into the boards during the morning skate.... Craig Johnson spent the night in Columbus and will fly today to Minnesota to attend his grandfather's funeral. He will not play Saturday against the Atlanta Thrashers.