Do the L.A. Kings Have Tradable Assets for a Top Six Forward?

Anyone who knows me well knows I am an American History geek. And I find so many parallels between America’s past and its present, including the average American’s incredible poor taste in their elected officials and almost pathological ability to repeat mistakes proven by past generations to be foolish.

One of the most interesting times in American history was the slave trade, especially between the 18th and 19th centuries. And if you take a very close look at professional sports, you will see parallels between it and slavery – one of the most compelling being that of the “trade”.

Once slaves were settled in this Country, they either gained or lost value. A hard-working and healthy slave was worth more than its lazy or weak counterpart. Some slaves were the elite of their kind and untouchable assets. Others were disposable.

It was and remains a repugnant time in our history.

It was and remains a very real part of our love of professional sports.

The L.A. Kings are rumored to be looking to make a trade or two.

Top 6? Yes. It is arguably our greatest need. Arguably because I don’t agree but many do.

Depth scoring? That may be just as hard as a top 6. Depth scorers that play 200 feet are not easy to find and assets rarely given up.

Defense? Most say no.

Who do the Kings have to trade?

Picks? Okay, I suppose that is always there but is there a top 6 forward out there that is worth just picks? And do we really believe Lombardi is willing to give up another 1st rounder?

From our top 6? Trade a top 6 forward to get a top 6 forward? Especially when we really only have 5? Who goes?

From our depth players? That is not a 1 on 1 trade. If, for example, you were willing to give up a Trevor Lewis or Kyle Clifford, that would not be enough to land you a top 6 left wing. So you are looking at one of those + another tradable asset and likely a pick.

And who do you give up? Cannot be a left wing. That means Clifford and King are out. A center? Jarrett Stoll is not getting traded. It would gut our depth at center and he is a force on faceoffs. Toffoli? Yes, that is a tradable asset but still not enough to get you a top 6. Fraser, King, Nolan are, at this point in their career, nothing special and are almost throw-ins in any trade. If you disagree, ask yourself if you are being objective?

That brings us to defense. That is what other teams will covet. Any team that can afford to give up a top 6 forward will likely be lacking on the back-end. If they had both, they would be a contender.

If you want a top 6 forward, you may have to give up a top 4 defenseman. Doughty? Hell no. Voynov? Ouch. And we cannot afford to give up Slava because we have nobody that can replace him. He is better than Martinez and on a different plane that Muzzin. After that? Greene? Injured. Mitchell? Has value but we need him more. Regehr? See Mitchell. Martinez? Muzzin? They are expendable but not top 4.

Goaltending? Just traded Ben Scrivens. Not trading Jones.

So that then brings us back to the original premise. Who do the L.A. Kings have to trade for a top 6 forward? A depth player, a depth defenseman and a pick? Not enough.

Enter the prospects. Lots of them. Varied value. If a team covets one of our prospects, it is what can allow a trade like this to happen. Are you prepared to give up a Tanner Pearson or Linden Vey + a depth defenseman + a 1st for a top 6? For a good one, that is what it will take, at a minimum…and anything more, does Lombardi do it?

Questions asked by slave owners. Questions asked by hockey GMs. The more things change…

My answer: Dean Lombardi is not making a trade for a top 6 forward unless he can steal one. “Hello, Craig? Craig MacTavish? Hey…it’s Dean Lombardi…”

Categories: L.A. Kings News

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17 replies

  1. Forgive me if this has been discussed already. Haven’t posted or read comments in a while. What is everyone’s feeling about Steve Ott? Team captain, could play center or wing, full of sandpaper, can put puck in the net although diminished in recent years, can play on the PK and PP, 54.5% career face off percentage, gets under people’s skin and draws penalties, can drop the gloves sometimes, hits alot, works his but off, probably would relish the chance to win a cup with the Kings and flourish in the Kings, 2.95 cap hit and UFA the year. Could probably be had for 2 mil I would think next year. Trade Nolan to his dad and some other piece or pieces and call it a day. Or maybe get Moulson too, although that’s a little over 6 mil in salary coming our way and probably a lot going back to Buffalo. To me it would fill a couple of needs although I haven’t really given it a real hard look. I’ve read the commentary on Moulson and our system and I can’t argue that. Personally I’d love to see Ott on the wing with Richards and Carter and see what happens. I’d also like to see David Perron on our team. Sorry if I’ve been redundant.

    • Ott – I can’t DL being remotely interested because it doesn’t address the glaring need of getting a goal scoring LW. And as much as I depise him (one of my least fav NHL players ), he’s very well liked and thought of by the Sabres fans and management. He’s their Captain for a reason. But he’s not a good fit here, for the same reason he does fit there.

  2. That’s why I was kinda bummed we traded Scrivens for a pick. I thought we could put a package deal together with him, one of our kids and maybe Frattin and get Perron but oh well…

  3. But yeah I agree with you. At this point we need a little slight of hand and a lot of luck to land a proper top 6, let alone a top 6 LW. The boys we have just need to step up and generate offense consistently! Either way I’m not really worried.

  4. KingJ99: Welcome to the Jungle! No on Ott we don’t need a gritty agitator, great team guy but he doesn’t help the bigger issue scoring goals.

    Moulson another no. He is definitely a Top 6 caliber LW but he is a UFA and is looking for 5+ per year on a long term deal so a minimum of what 5 years? He could wind up being a high priced rental which decides to go elsewhere once the season is done with the Kings. Buffalo will want to try to keep him or maybe send him to Ottawa.

    Perron: Top 6 not quite, agitator like Ott but probably more scoring upside and a decent 200 ft player. Problem with Perron has been health, concussions, post concussion symptoms. He plays for Edmonton a team that is a complete mess, but with a player like Perron he’s more valuable to the Oilers than he would be with the Kings. Plus most trades Lombardi has made with Edmonton have blown up in his face. Fraser was a gimp coming in when he made that trade with Edmonton shipping Smyth back to Edmonton.

    Oh just so we get this straight because it will be repeated and repeated Evander Kane, Andrew Ladd, Blake Wheeler are not going to be traded to the Kings if they are traded at all.

    This far into his reign as GM Dean Lombardi has done a good job rebuilding the Kings and drafting players in rounds 2-8 unless they get lucky with a lottery pick and something happens like it did for Doughty, Bernier, Schenn.

    Problem is the Kings don’t have that this stockpile of upcoming draft picks and lets be honest Lombardi has done a pretty shitty job of drafting good 1st round picks when he had them, but was good in the later rounds.

    To think about Wayne Simmonds which he allowed his coach Terry Murray to ruin, only to see Simmonds thriving in Philly East. It makes me sick that one coach was able to screw up young prospects and then convince Lombardi they weren’t worth keeping. Simmonds was/is a gritty winger, goes to the net, drops the gloves and scored goals.

    We can name players who came through the Kings organization while Lombardi was GM who are now good players with other teams but there is nothing that can be done now.

    Too many smaller centers like Weal, Vey even Kozun who have put up decent numbers as a wing but we don’t see them being traded or even playing with the Kings.

    There are a whole group of prospects who are still in juniors or in college playing right now, but we won’t know if any of them are going to pan out because they are probably a few years away.

    I hate to say this, but I don’t trust Lombardi to make a trade. His evaluations have been off. Dustin Penner he allowed to hang around for 3 seasons. Penner scored a few goals a few big goals but for the amount of money he was being paid, and his production it was a horrible acquisition regardless of them giving up Teubert, a 1st round pick and a second round pick for Penner?

    I look at his handling of Frolov, and then signing Ponikarovsky to replace a Frolov?

    I also can’t forgive him telling everyone Scott Parse was a Top 6 wing for 3 seasons and the guy played what 73 games.

    I understand not every GM makes only good trades, or drafts really well, but Lombardi has been allowed to stockpile centers and prospects who we don’t know when or how they will turn out. To be perfectly honest nobody has some crystal ball to look into the future, but his picks have been more miss than hit.

    I just don’t trust Lombardi to make a deal to fill a need for the long term. Lombardi has never been able to sign a marquee UFA for the Kings. That fact alone says a lot about his reputation.

    If a move is made it should be after the Olympic break, just because you might make a trade and the player coming to the Kings gets injured, thus not being able to contribute immediately.

    • Yea Lombardi is terrible at trades. Getting Williams for O’sullivan? Did you forget that teubert is a bust and nothing has come out of that draft pick yet. We did win a CUP as a direct result of Lombardi’s trades.

      Richards for simmonds and schenn was a great trade for us. How bout Stoll and Greene for Lubo? Jack Johnson for Jeff Carter seems to have worked out pretty well.

      You can second guess the best GM in franchise history if you like. Your comments hold water like a strainer.

      In Dean We Trust

  5. I don’t think there’s any doubt that DL will pull the trigger for an LW. But some of the names being tossed around by TSN, THN and other hockey pundits would cost too much . Much as anyone might like Patches, Vanek or Moulson,(and he’s the name they think DL will end up with ) will cost too much and in Vanek’s case be a rental. Patches , I’m a fan of , but don’t see the kings haven’t the right price. Kane and Ladd would be good on any team’s LW but the kings don’t have enough to trade back. Cammalleri -no thanks, don’t like him.
    But it’s not to say there isn’t an LW that might not cost as much,a guy like Fleischmann who has a reasonable cap hit and has pretty good numbers every year. Also, FLA has a lot of money under the cap and if the Hawks talked them into eating half of Versteeg’s salary in that trade, DL could probably do that or similar since the Panthers want to trade him (like they did Versteeg and Weiss) to go younger. But I haven’t heard his name in many of the trade rumor/articles.
    I also think DL is sniffing around for a vet D, since he won’t sign both Greene and Mitchell. And given Green’s steady diet of injuries over the last 2 years, I think that’s a smart move. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him try to get one of the vet Stay at homes that are being shopped.
    I read (and don’t know if it was the Mayor’s manor or another blogger) a comment that the LAK management is pushing hard for them to do what it takes to get another cup. So if that means moving Pearson, Vey or another young prospect with Clifford, lewis or Fraser and a pick , he’ll do it.
    Without an upgrade at LW, I don’t see them going deep. It’s been a reoccurring weakness far too long. I think DL has been casting the bait and will reel something in post Olympic break.

  6. What I’ve filled my thimble up with is pro rating and clubs keeping salary. I don’t think we trade assets, or 1st round picks. Florida and Calgary seem legit dancing partners. Teams in a rebuild or unique situation like the Ryan Smyth situation for L.A…… If there is a deal out there like that, that doesn’t hurt the Kings….. that’s the kind of magic I’m hoping for. I don’t believe for a second we go into the playoffs with Pearson and Vey in the lineup, unless they both go all Tomas Hurtalittle. Lombardi hasn’t knocked one out of the park with a first round pick yet. Well……. How many GMs have? Of them how many did so with a pick in the top 3-5 players every year. Our 1st round picks have been in the late 20s for a few years now. It’s good Lombardi can work the 2nd round so well. That’s where our best picks will be coming from. The more we win the less likely a first round pick will be of the variety player we need. DL pulled off some blockbuster shit with the Carter trade. Helped a bit… Ya think? Anyway…… I just feel like DL knows the team, the game, the business, the fans, all that shit. He knows what we want and need, when it’s available he’ll get it. We aren’t talking right fit anymore. The locker room can handle one or two players that aren’t perfect, but can be put up for their contributions in points. The culture is here. Few rentals. Good to go.

  7. The word on the street is the deadline may be march 5 but the unofficial deadline is feb 7 since the trade wire will be shut down during the Olympics. I think if Deano’s gonna pull the trigger it’s gonna be sooner than later if at all.

  8. Rumblings of Moulson coming back? Definitely would want him over Cammy. Actually Moulson Richards Carts doesn’t sound that bad.

    The question is what does buffalo want in return. Deans a relatively smart guy (Parse was a disaster) and hopefully he’ll make the right move. He rolled the dice on Carts and Sutter and came out a winner.

    • Rumour is the Sabres want a top prospect and a 1st rounder for Moulson. I agree that I would rather have him over Cammy, but is he worth that package and is he worth 6+ mill to resign? as that is what he is seeking.

  9. I am really tired of hearing that DL makes bad deals and can’t land high profile FAs.
    Sure Simmonds scores more with Philly. Just like any player would when leaving the Kings. It’s the team’s style of play to have lower scoring games and hence lower scoring players. It’s not that DL acquired or let the wrong player go.
    It’s also not productive to building a long term winner to go after big trades and costly FAs, with their large cap hits. Look what happened to NJ after they acquired Kovy. You don’t think they wish they still had Parise, Clarkson, those picks and prospects back? The Kings are trying to build that long term winner, so they will bargain hunt and build through the draft. If you don’t like it then you should probably think about following a different team. Historically, the Kings were a team that always traded away young prospects and 1st round picks for established talent. In all those years, they made it to the Finals once.

  10. First of all, comparing slaves to millionaires is a far fetched and extremely offensive. Down right stupid actually. Second, the top 6 already has Kopitar, Carter, Richards, Brown, Williams, and King. If that top 6 can’t get it done, well then the team has problems well beyond that.

    Look at Chicago: Duncan Keith, Seabrook, Hjalmersson, Leddy, Oduya, Rozival. That there is a defense, and what the Kings should strive for if they want to win. Seabrook, Hjalmersson and Oduya are extremely effective on the defensive and Keith is the fucking Norris Trophy God. I would trade Doughty 100 times over if we can get ol’ Duncan Keith as our guy.

    It’s whatever. I have faith Dean will do what is right come the deadline.


  11. OK. So, I’m the first one to comment on how the Kings got shafted in Detroit! Well … I’ve been watching hockey for over forty years, and I’ve never seen all four NHL on-ice officials miss a puck that went out of bounds, high in the netting above the goal, and say that the puck was still in play. Tonight … it was worse than that! It not only went high into the netting, but it dropped down, perfectly, to the center of Quick’s back and went into the net!! And then it was called a good goal!! It wasn’t just a good goal, but it was the game tying goal, which sent the teams into overtime! Then, Detroit won the game in a shootout!!!!! I’m going insane!!!! I can’t take it!!!! This is a disgrace!!!!

    As for how the Kings played. I think they played very well … like they did in St. Louis. I am also very happy to see solid play out of Muzzin and Lewis … again!! I hope they keep it up!

    Go Kings!

  12. How about David Jones from Calgary for a third or fourth round pick?


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