Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
One of the NHL’s biggest issues during that down turn was how weak its teams were in the three major U.S. markets – New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. The iffy results in Boston, another attractive Original Six market, weren’t great either. But the Rangers have been OK for a few years now; the Bruins soared to the top of the Eastern Conference last year; and the Blackhawks possess one of the best young teams in the game.
So now it is just left for the Kings to execute their turnaround in the standings, a painfully slow process that some thought would be expedited this July in the unrestricted free-agent market. It didn’t happen, but not for lack of trying.
The Kings ended up with one strategic signing – defenceman Rob Scuderi, off the reigning Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins – and one addition made via trade, acquiring former Oilers winger Ryan Smyth from the rebuilding Colorado Avalanche.
read on plus Chicago, Heatley and Wings talk too…
Ryan Smyth, recently acquired from Colorado, met with Daryl Evans on his first day in Los Angeles as he joins his new team.
As he often does, Rich Hammond of Inside the Kings answers questions from Kings fans…
Question: Do you think we will be signing any other UFA’s or are we just about done? What are your thoughts on Moller playing this year or being sent to Manchester?
Answer: Lombardi seems open to the idea of bringing in one more veteran defenseman, probably one in the $1-million range who could fill that 6/7 spot. He mentioned, in passing, bringing back Denis Gauthier, but I don’t know if that will happen. That’s the only addition I would anticipate the Kings making before the start of training camp.
If you’re an L.A. Kings fan, there are a lot of good reasons to be pleased with the trade that brings former Avalanche and Oilers left winger Ryan Smyth to California. He’s someone who every player on that roster would be smart to emulate – in all areas except for hairstyling.
That brings me to an important question: How long is Smyth’s world-renowned mullet going to last in Southern California? Don’t they have laws there punishing crimes against hair? Isn’t he going to get tired of having scripts for Joe Dirt sequels offered to him day in and day out?
-Adam Proteau of The Hockey News. More hockey talk from Adam…
Ryan talks about his decision to waive his NMC and a few other topice with Rich Hammond of Inside the Kings,
Question: You talked about some of the discussion with your family. What were some of the factors you weighed?
SMYTH: “Obviously we have a beautiful home in Colorado, so we had to weigh the factors of all that stuff, and moving. Then you look at the hockey front. (The Avalanche) came to me and said they wanted to rebuild, and money was an issue, and obviously that goes hand in hand with my issue and my contract. It was mutual at the end of the day, and I have nothing but great things to say about Colorado.’‘
Question: Playing in Colorado, you’ve had a chance to get a decent look at the Kings. What are your impressions?
SMYTH: “Watching these young kids play, and to see the energy and excitement and the direction the organization is going in, there’s nothing but upside. I’m honored to be a part of it and I hope I can contribute a lot.’‘
The Colorado Avalanche have traded Ryan Smyth to the Los Angeles Kings.
The 33-year old posted 26 goals and 33 assists in 77 games last season.
Smyth spent most of the first 12 seasons of his career with the Oilers, but after failing to reach a contract agreement, was dealt to the New York Islanders at the trade deadline in 2007.
In that off-season he signed a five-year, $31.25 million deal with the Avalanche.
added 11:25pm, via Darren Dreger’s Twitter,
Ryan Smyth to Los Angeles for D Kyle Quincey, D Tom Priessing and a 5th round pick
DENVER – The Colorado Avalanche Hockey Club announced today that it has acquired defensemen Kyle Quincey and Tom Preissing, along with a fifth round pick in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for forward Ryan Smyth. The trade is conditional upon the players passing a physical.
“We are pleased to be adding two quality NHL defensemen,” said Avalanche General Manager Greg Sherman. “Kyle and Tom are both versatile players who can contribute at both ends. They will add defensive depth to our lineup.”
added 7/04/09 12:05am, via Adrian Dater of All Things Avs,
By the way, there has been a report that Alex Tanguay will re-sign with the Avalanche to replace Smyth. That will NOT happen. Tanguay is not coming back to the Avalanche, period.
My sources tell me Tanguay could be signing with the Phoenix Coyotes. But that is not a done deal at this point.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
“It feels very weird,” Scuderi told ESPN.com after signing the deal. “It’s a weird combination of odd and exciting.”
While he had no desire to leave and wouldn’t have left had the economics of the game and the cap restraints of the Penguins specifically been different, he acknowledged, “it’s kind of exciting to start a new challenge.”
via Rob Rossi, Penguins beat writer, on his Twitter,
Rob Scuderi has agreed to terms with the Los Angeles Kings, he confirms via text.
Update 4:27pm ET: From TSN—
The Los Angeles Kings made their first dip into the free agent market on Thursday, signing defenceman Rob Scuderi to a four-year, $13.6 million contract.
from Rich Hammond of Inside the Kings,
OK, here are all the quotes from tonight’s interview with Dean Lombardi. I typed fast, so excuse any typos.
Can you go through the day, and talk about anything you might have been close to getting done?
LOMBARDI: ``Obviously we went into this for wingers. Like I’ve said, it’s one of the positives of being in our situation now, as opposed to three years ago, when we were looking for everything and signing seven guys. The No. 1 guy we targeted was Hossa. I got permission to talk to Hossa at the draft. There were three teams, us and two others. Detroit gave me permission, and we started the dialogue at that time. Detroit, if he got signed, they would get compensation.
read on for more on the Kings…
from Rich Hammond of Inside the Kings,
In terms of the Big Three (Hossa, Havlat, Gaborik), I’ll make the following predictions: Hossa will not be a King, and Havlat and/or Gaborik will be with the Kings only if they agree to short-term deals.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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