LA Kings Anze Kopitar Becomes The NHL’s Newest $10 Million Man

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar, shown here at the team’s 2012 Stanley Cup Championship celebration
at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

LOS ANGELES — On January 16, the National Hockey League got its third $10 million man this season.

Prior to their game against the Ottawa Senators at Staples Center in Los Angeles on January 16, the Los Angeles Kings announced that they have signed star center Anze Kopitar to an eight-year contract extension, a deal that has a reported average annual value of $10 million per season.

As first reported by TSN’s Darren Dreger, Kopitar’s deal is heavily front-loaded, paying him $14 million the first year, $13 million the second year, $12 million the third year and $11 million in the fourth year. After that, he will earn $8 million in each of the next two years followed by $7 million in each of the final two years of the contract.

Dreger also reported that the extension includes a no-movement clause for the first four years of the deal, and a limited no-trade clause for the final four years.

As first reported by ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the contract extension also includes a $9 million bonus, payable on July 1, 2016, and another $9 million bonus, payable on July 1, 2017.

Following their 5-3 collapse against the Senators, Kopitar sat in his dressing room stall, waiting for the local media.

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Anze Kopitar Remains Coy With LA Kings Deal Apparently Imminent

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar, shown here at a recent practice.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

EL SEGUNDO, CA — As reported by TSN’s Darren Dreger and Bob McKenzie, the Los Angeles Kings and star center Anze Kopitar are apparently on the verge of agreeing to a reported eight-year contract with an annual average value of $10 million per season.

A Kings spokesperson told the local media that an announcement could come today or on Thursday.

But Kopitar wasn’t about to confirm anything after today’s practice at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California.

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Former GM Dave Taylor Started LA Kings Down Championship Road: Anze Kopitar

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Davie Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

LOS ANGELES — Ten years ago last June, the Los Angeles Kings’ fortunes were dramatically changed in the annual National Hockey League draft, one that would set them on a course towards finally becoming a Stanley Cup Champion.

In the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, the year that Sidney Crosby was the runaway, consensus first overall selection by the Pittsburgh Penguins, big names like Bobby Ryan, Carey Price, Marc Staal, and T.J. Oshie were all selected in the first round. But perhaps the best player other than Crosby was not selected until the 11th overall pick, when the Kings were on the board.

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LA Kings Toss Lecavalier, Schenn Right Into the Fire

Newly-acquired LA Kings defenseman Luke Schenn spoke with
the local media for the first time on January 7, 2016.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Sometime during the 11:00 AM hour on January 7, Vincent Lecavalier and Luke Schenn arrived at Los Angeles International Airport, having been traded to the Los Angeles Kings from the Philadelphia Flyers the day before.

Both players had to undergo physical examinations and then make their way to the Kings’ practice facility in El Segundo, California to meet with team management and briefly with the coaching staff.

Little did they know that the coaches had a surprise in store for them—that they would be in the lineup that same night against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

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LA Kings Kill Two Birds With One Stone In Lecavalier-Schenn Trade

Newly-acquired LA Kings players Vincent Lecavalier (left) and Luke Schenn (right).
(click above to view larger image)
Photos courtesy National Hockey League

LOS ANGELES — In a season that has seen relatively few trades so far, the Los Angeles Kings and Philadelphia Flyers gave us the first legitimate blockbuster deal since the 2015-16 season began last October, when the Flyers sent center Vincent Lecavalier and defenseman Luke Schenn to the Kings on January 6, in exchange for center prospect Jordan Weal and a third round pick in the 2016 National Hockey League Draft.

To make the deal work, the Flyers retained 50 percent of both Lecavalier’s and Schenn’s salaries ($2.25 million and $1.8 million, respectively).

Also making the deal work is that the 35-year-old Lecavalier will retire at the end of the season.

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