Thursday, July 30, 2009

What Happened in Hollywood? On the Verge of...Above Average

Free agents:
LW Kyle Calder, 2,700,000 (u)
D Denis Gauthier, 2,200,000 (u)
Derek Armstrong, 1,600,000 (u)
RW Teddy Purcell, 850,000 (r)
D Jack Johnson 850,000 (r)

D Rob Scuderi, 4 years, $13.6M (Penguins)
D Jack Johnson, 2 years (re-signed)
RW Teddy Purcell, 1 year (re-signed)

Trade In:
Ryan Smyth (Colorado)


Trade Out:
Kyle Quincey
Tom Preissing

They should be good. For what, 3 seasons now we've been sayin' that? Is this the year they finally bring it all together? Well, I guess that depends on Jonathan Quick and Erik Ersberg. The failures of the Cloutiers, the LaBarberas, and the Aubins are all well documented, and we've all had fun at their expense. But now they've got a little bit of talent in net, and now the Pacific division might just have another player.

The big move for the Kings was obviously bringing in Rob Scuderi, who single handedly, err, single leggedly, made himself about $1.5 million more with his performance in the playoffs with the Penguins. Between the kick save and his job on Ovechkin, he priced himself right out of Pittsburgh, and into Hollywood. Maybe overpriced, but as a guy to mentor Doughty and Jack Johnson, you can't go wrong. A far better guy for that role than the asshat known as Denis Gauthier.

Thanks to Matt Reitz for the reminder, but we can't forget that Ryan Smyth, and that contract, were added to the Kings' lineup as well. Captain Canada could do well cleaning up after Frolov, Kopitar and Co., that is, if he could ever stay healthy.

I would say more, but there's not much else to say about their offseason moves. As long as they continue to progress, I don't see why they can't at least contend for a spot in the top 8.


Matt Reitz said...

Don't forget... they were also able to add Ryan Smyth in a trade after they were unable to sign a top-flight winger in free agency.

Besides the goaltending (which has been hovering between awful and atrocioius for about 15 years), the Kings had some huge holes on the wings of their top 2 lines. At the beginning of last season, it was Brown, Frolov, hope for Patrick O'Sullivan and a gaping hole.

With a full season of Justin Williams and Ryan Smyth to help teach players to GO TO THE FREAKIN NET, their top 2 lines actually look decent.

Remember, even though goaltending has been The Suck, they were dead last in 5-on-5 scoring last year. If Williams and Smyth stay healthy, they should go a long way towards turning that around....

Vance said...

I did forget Ryan Smyth, good catch. He'll definitely go a long ways towards helping the top 6 come around. Hopefully he can stay healthy for once in a decade.

Matt Reitz said...

Yeah, they're depending on Justin Williams and Ryan Smyth to stay healthy......

Right. :-)

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