The Los Angeles Kings are one of the strangest teams I’ve ever seen. They have a large number of very talented young forwards (Anze Kopitar, Mike Cammalleri, Alex Frolov, Dustin Brown) some talented defensemen who have a lot of experience (Visnovsky, Blake, Stuart, Modry, Preissing) and goaltending that is so bad the NHL should probably fine the Kings for not icing a competitive team (Dan Cloutier’s SP was .860! .860 in over 1200 minutes!).
I’ve read lots of nice things about LA General Manager Dean Lombardi but he isn’t really helping the resume these days. The San Jose Sharks experience doesn’t seem to be duplicating itself in southern California (IS Los Angeles south of San Jose? It must be.).
Bad organizations do dumb stuff. An example is happening to LA right now, as Mike Cammalleri is having a tough time getting a contract done. He said today (and I’m quoting a tsn article): ”The Kings have yet to make me an offer. There hasn’t been all that much communication. For me, I guess I can only take that as an indication of where I stand right now.”
Mike Cammalleri is a very valuable young hockey player. He made $1.7M last season, while Dan Cloutier made $3.1M and will do the same for the next two seasons. I’m not suggesting they pull a Lou in NJ and send Cloutier to the minors in order to swallow the money and save the cap (which is the best plan), but if the LA Kings are looking to save some dollars surely to God there are better ways than pissing off last season’s top scorer.
Hopefully this will get vicious and the Oilers can make a deal with Los Angeles. Cammalleri is an extremely attractive option.