2011-12 Year-In-Review: Doughty Holdout, Failure To Execute In Offensive Zone Almost Sunk LA Kings Early
July 2, 2012 4 Comments
2011-12 YEAR-IN-REVIEW: A turnaround of sorts in the Los Angeles Kings front office set the stage for them to win the first Stanley Cup Championship in the 45-year history of the franchise. But there was a big, black cloud floating over their heads all summer long. Second installment in a series…
LOS ANGELES — After a very productive 2011 off-season, highlighted by the acquisition of center Mike Richards from the Philadelphia Flyers in a blockbuster deal on June 23, 2011, sending right wing Wayne Simmonds, center Brayden Schenn, and a second round pick in the 2012 National Hockey League Entry Draft the other way (the Flyers traded the pick to the Dallas Stars), the Los Angeles Kings seemed to be set up to finally become a contender, not only for the top spot in the Pacific Division, but also for first place in the Western Conference.
But there was one big problem hanging over their heads from the end of the 2010-11 season…defenseman Drew Doughty was not yet signed to a new contract, and with him looking for a huge payday, the two sides were far, far apart on reaching an agreement.
As most feared, neither side budged during the summer, and Doughty became a contract holdout. An agreement was not reached until September 30, 2011, when Doughty made his first appearance on practice ice—he missed virtually all of the Kings’ training camp.