Wanted

Prototypical second line, power forward, left wing who plays a two-way game, dishes out punishing body checks, can take a hit and has a nose for the dirty areas including but not limited to the boards and the front of the net.

Applicant must possess strong skating skills and an above average offensive acumen. Elite goal scoring ability is not necessary but the contribution of 15-20 goals and a similar amount of assists is a plus. Veteran experience preferred. Will be playing with trusted and well-respected forwards Jeff Carter and Mike Richards. Must be able to withstand repetitive and meaningless inquiries from moderately inept Los Angeles hockey media and sometimes unfair but generally entertaining criticism from limited and select voraciously intense L.A. Kings bloggers. Inquire at Staples Center, Los Angeles, California.

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Applicant One:

I am a veteran left wing in the NHL. Though I am neither strong nor skilled nor particularly smart, which is to say I am quite stupid, I possess a face that scares small children and women who have not partaken of an excess of adult beverages. I have prior experience with forwards Jeff Carter and Mike Richards and hope to acquire this second line position, not on merit but on favor. Regards, Daniel Carcillo, 1451 Jerk Face St., Backwater, USA.

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Applicant Two:

I am a young, highly skilled right wing who is ready to embrace a left wing position so I can have a regular role in the NHL. I have a high hockey IQ, soft hands, a wicked wrist shot, deceptively quick feet and the ability to bury the biscuit from any scoring area on the ice. I do not come with tremendous size or necessarily sought after physical attributes but, upon learning the left wing position, I will bring a constant offensive threat to the second line. I have prior experience playing with Jeff Carter and Mike Richards with varying degrees of success. While nurturing in a fourth line role to increase my defensive game is likely in my best interest, I believe I am ready for this full-time promotion. Warmest regards, Tyler Toffoli, aka Top Titty.

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Applicant Three:

I am an NHL forward and wing with, more or less, three years of NHL experience. I am a prototypical power forward who possesses punishing checking skills and am strong on my skates. I am very difficult to knock off the puck. I am in tremendous shape and although I have struggled with some injury issues that have stunted my development, I am currently healthy and ready for the opportunity to take over the second line left wing position. My skill set is very similar to your first line left wing and Captain Dustin Brown in both size, skating ability, hands as well as my general approach to the game. I have had the unfortunate circumstance of playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs organization and with soft marshmallow types like Phil Kessel but I am certain that a change of scenery and the opportunity to show off my ability, which I humbly submit is exactly what you’re looking for, will pay tremendous dividends for us both. Very truly yours, Matt Frattin.

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Dear applicants, thank you for your inquiries. We have not only paid close attention to what you have written but have conducted an in-depth analysis of your talents.

Mr. Carcillo, while I am sure your supreme ugliness would, if nothing else, distract opposing defensemen and goaltenders on an infrequent basis, we don’t see that you offer anything other than comic relief for our franchise.

Mr. Toffoli, in your young career, you have shown yourself to have tremendous potential and a skill set eventually befitting of a top six role may be inevitable if you continue to progress at the reasonable pace that we expect.

Although it would be of benefit to have you in that top six role once you are ready, that time is not yet now. We must first continue to work on your checking and defensive skills and round you out as a more complete player before placing you in such a position. The L.A. Kings believe you will continue to get the opportunity to test your ability and earn your place with our elite forwards.

Mr. Frattin, we traded for you for exactly the reasons you describe. We view you as that industrial grade power forward left wing for which we have advertised and we believe that you are a good fit and the right package for the second line position. While there are no guarantees that your health and consistency will keep you at that position, we welcome giving you the opportunity to take your game to another level, show us that you were and are well worth the price we paid and, although not critical to our goals but nevertheless important, to make Toronto Maple Leafs fans cry.

We Won The Cup,

Your Los Angeles Kings

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For those going into the NHL season with the thought that Tyler Toffoli is a shoo-in for the second line spot, let me be the first to tell you that you’re out of your Sutting mind. You are probably the same ones who think that Mike Richards and Jeff Carter should be broken up – akin to breaking up Yin from Yang – because it may bring “balance.” You likely call yourself an “ass” man or a “tits” man, as if any man in their right mind would turn down the simultaneous thrust of both…but you are not of your right mind, are you? The offseason has caused you to lose it.

Have you forgotten who our coach is? Have you forgotten who is the general manager of our LA Kings?

Both of them value a complete game and neither of them place tremendous emphasis on high-end skill in the absence of a proven track record on the other end of the ice as well as a physical game. While the often moronic dot to boards game that Darryl Sutter’s predecessor employed  and which sucked the life out of our offense is long behind us, the current regime has not abandoned parts of the “heavy” game, especially when it brings four lines that play 200 feet.

Jeff Carter is a high-end goalscorer who plays a two-way game. Mike Richards is a gritty two-way forward and playmaker who skates to each end of the ice ill-tempered and with the goal of getting the puck on his stick.

These two need a power forward on the left side.

Tyler Toffoli has tremendous potential but he is not the right fit in the second line position quite yet. Matt Frattin is a slightly poor man’s version of Dustin Brown. Just as Dustin Brown has become a fixture on the first line left wing, Matt Frattin will become one on the second line with Jeff Carter and Mike Richards.

It’s his position to lose.

He screws it up and Tyler steps up. He doesn’t and you may have to wait until Justin Williams’ tenure with the Kings ends before you see Toffoli in a top six role.

GO KINGS!