The Drew Doughty saga in sunny Los Angeles has dragged out all summer as the Kings look to lock up their star defenceman to a long term-deal.
The two sides appear to be far apart still as Kings general manager Dean Lombardi told Rich Hammond of LAKingsinsider.com, “I think it’s fair to say that in the last conversation, we set the parameters, as to where we feel his contract should be. We talked about a number of scenarios, and I guess now it’s their move. They never really responded.”
I know this has dragged on all summer and many, (my hand goes up,) thought the Shea Weber arbitration ruling would help move things along after setting the bar but I don’t see this continuing into training camp.
Having said that, Lombardi has been quite vocal this summer about the elimination of the second contract in the NHL as players coming off their entry-level contracts (ELC) to cash in with large deals immediately. Surprise, surprise, Lombardi doesn’t like it but the reality is given the nature of the salary cap, the NHL is now a prospector’s league where you gamble on how a player will end up by the end of his contract. You have to hope now that even though a player may earn a little more than you feel he’s worth at the front end of the contract, by the end of the deal you could have a bargain.
Where, once upon a time, teams rewarded older players for past performance while keeping younger players salaries down, (“pay yer dues, kid”), that’s now a recipe for disappointment and eventually a buyout.
Things should be resolved soon because as much as Lombardi may not like the situation, he’s too smart to go to war with his franchise player.
Swedish forward Filip Forsberg was described to me as being the best player in the tournament, however. He’s draft eligible in 2012 and is Top 5 on many scouting lists.
By the way, the Canada/Russia game will take place in Piestany. What could possibly go wrong?
1920: Chuck Rayner was born in Sutherland, SK. Played in the NHL with the New York Americans and Rangers from ’40-’53 and never had a single winning season yet still made it to the Hall of Fame. A superior puck-handling goaltender, Rayner almost became a piece of history on Feb. 19, 1950 in a game involving his Rangers and the Toronto Maple Leafs. With Turk Broda pulled for the extra attacker Rayner banked a shot off the boards towards the empty Toronto net but it just missed the net. Rayner was also known to occasionally join the rush after making a save as well. He even got deep enough on a couple of occasions to fire a shot at the opposing goalie!
1925: Former Habs winger Floyd Curry was born in Chapleau, QC. Great nickname – ‘The Honest Blocker’ (he also went by ‘Busher’). A solid two-way player for the Canadiens from 1947-1958, Curry scored the only hat trick of his career in front of Queen Elizabeth who was taking in a game at the Forum on Oct. 29, 1951.
1949: Dave Shand born in Cold Lake, AB. Drafted eighth overall by the Atlanta Flames in 1976, Shand’s NHL career came to an end in Washington in 1985 shortly after he blocked a Scott Stevens slap shot in the face at Caps training camp. That shot broke Shand’s nasal cavity. He played 13 games after that for the Caps and then retired from the league to go play in Austria.
1958: “The Rat” Ken Linseman born in Kingston, ON. Want to know why kids are drafted at the age of 18? Linseman’s your answer. He took the NHL to court over the league’s refusal to allow teams to draft ‘underage’ players, which was the onramp for the league to lower the draft age. Bobby Clarke gave him the nickname not because he was an agitator but because Clarke said that’s what he looked like when he skated.
1978: St Louis signs free agent Steve Durbano. He was one of the craziest players in the history of the NHL (and WHA for that matter). During a 1979 game against the Rangers, Durbano dropped his hockey pants and mooned the crowd at MSG. It’s true, check it out. Durbano also had a major problem with refs in every league he was in. In 1973, he was suspended for pushing referee Ron Wicks (he also threw his gloves at Wicks). Then in 1978 while playing for the Birmingham Bulls of the WHA, he got dinged for deliberately firing the puck at ref Bill Friday.
1998: Carolina trades Stu Grimson and Kevin Haller to Anaheim for David Karpa and a fourth round pick. Grimson has to be the toughest born-again Christian ever, no?
Name: Brooks Robinson
Earliest Hockey Memory: Playing: Learning how to skate in Darlington Arena in Hampton, Ontario. Having my big brother on the bench leaning over telling me to get up. All the other parents and siblings were on the ice helping their son or daughter or brother or sister get up, but I was forced to do it on my own. Turned out to be one of the best things he did for me.
Watching; Hockey Night in Canada was a family staple in the house. Me on the floor watching with Mom and Dad in their recliners. And if the phone rang during Coaches Corner, it did NOT get answered.
Favourite YouTube Hockey Moment: To me, the CBC playoff pre-game montages are the best in all of sports. They are all well done but to me, there is none better than Game 7 between Boston and Montreal at the Bell Centre in 2008. It starts off with Ron MacLean voicing a small speech followed by Marion Cotillard singing a French song “I regret nothing” from La Vie en Rose. This game marked the first time Boston and Montreal met in a Game 7 in Montreal since 1979. I’m not a fan of either of these teams but just watching it gives you goosebumps.
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