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LA Kings Losing Scuderi, Richardson Shouldn’t Come As A Surprise

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENCY – DAY 1: After bidding farewell to Rob Scuderi and Brad Richardson, the Los Angeles Kings welcomed defenseman Jeff Schultz to the team, signing him to a one-year deal on Day 1 of unrestricted free agency.


LA Kings newly-acquired
defenseman Jeff Schultz
Photo courtesy National Hockey League

LOS ANGELES — Day 1 of the feeding frenzy in the National Hockey League, otherwise known as unrestricted free agency, ended with what turned out to be a rather expected result for the Los Angeles Kings, who lost veteran, stay-at-home defenseman Rob Scuderi, after he signed a four-year contract valued at $13.5 million with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

In the end, family was the deciding factor for the two-time Stanley Cup winner, who will play his second stint with the Penguins, the team he won his first Stanley Cup with in 2009.

“Both [the Kings and the Penguins] have the ability to play deep into the spring,” Scuderi told the media during a conference call. “But Pittsburgh is much closer geographically to where I am from, and I thought at my age, I wasn’t going to get this opportunity again to pull the trigger on something like this.”

Scuderi is a native of Syosset, New York, and has many relatives who reside in New York.

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LA Kings Defenseman Willie Mitchell On Concussions: “I Get Into A Car Wreck Six Times A Night”

When it comes to concussions, Los Angeles Kings
defenseman Willie Mitchell speaks from experience.
Photo: David Sheehan

EL SEGUNDO, CA — We’re not even at the halfway point of the 2011-12 National Hockey League season, but far too many players have already gone down due to concussions.

In no particular order, the NHL has lost stars like Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers, Milan Michalek of the Ottawa Senators, Jeff Skinner of the Carolina Hurricanes, and Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators, all to concussions.

Most notably, the league has also lost Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger, who is expected to miss the rest of the season, and Pittsburgh Penguins superstar forward Sidney Crosby is out indefinitely after a recurrence of post-concussion syndrome. Read more of this post

Los Angeles Kings Need Center Anze Kopitar To Be A Little Greedy

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The Los Angeles Kings appear to have turned things around, earning a 5-0-1 record in their last six games, and a 6-3-1 record in their last ten. All that comes after an absolutely dreadful stretch from late December through much of January that saw them lose ten out of twelve games.

The Los Angeles Kings need top center Anze Kopitar to break out of another long goal scoring drought.
Photo: Los Angeles Kings

Even more impressive, the Kings are 2-0-1 in the first three of ten straight games away from Staples Center.

But with six more ahead of them—a brutal road trip that includes contests against three of the Eastern Conference’s best—the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Washington Capitals, and the Philadelphia Flyers (they skate at Anaheim to end the ten-game stretch), it will be quite the struggle for the Kings to come out of that six-game trip with even a .500 record.

The problem is that the Kings need to come out of that six-game trip with a winning record just to stay in the hurt for playoff berth in the National Hockey League’s ultra-competitive Western Conference. But to do that, they will need more from top center Anze Kopitar, who is mired in yet another of his all-too-familiar goal scoring droughts, with just one goal in his last 19 games, and none in his last nine games. His last goal came on January 15, in a 5-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers at Staples Center. Read more of this post

LA Kings: Can Third Line of Handzus, Ponikarovsky, Simmonds Be More Than A Shut Down Line?

EL SEGUNDO, CA — As the Los Angeles Kings head into their 2010 exhibition season tonight (September 22, 2010) at Colorado, much of what head coach Terry Murray has in mind for his team is already apparent, especially in terms of his forward lines.

At this point in the Kings’ 2010 training camp, Murray has Anze Kopitar centering the first line with Ryan Smyth and Dustin Brown on the wings, with Jarret Stoll centering the second line between Scott Parse and Justin Williams. Read more of this post

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