Kings, Anze Kopitar contract ‘getting closer to being done’

Damien Cox and Elliotte Friedman breaks down the rumours and rumblings of the week before Christmas, including Ryan Johansen, Steven Stamkos and the Dallas Stars' sneaky face-off tactic.

The wait is almost over, Kings fans.

It seems we’ve been waiting for ages to see if the Los Angeles Kings can come to terms with pending UFA star centre Anze Kopitar on a new contract.

Now, a few months and plenty of reports later, the two sides might finally have a deal.

“One of the hangups was believed to be a no-move or no-trade clause,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman noted during Saturday’s Headlines segment on Hockey Night in Canada. “But whatever the solution is there, we understand it’s been reached, and it’s no longer an issue.”

Reports have indicated the contract would span the maximum eight years, with an annual value just shy of Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane’s league-leading $10.5 million per year.

“[Kopitar]’s everything we covet as a King,” Mike Futa, L.A.’s director of hockey operations, told Hockey Central at the beginning of November. “It’s too close to not get it done.

“Anytime we write out our core and what has made up successful, the first name we write down is our C1, Number 11.”

Kopitar, who is in Toronto facing the Toronto Maple Leafs Saturday night, has nine goals and 11 assists for 20 points and is plus-16 in 31 games with the Kings this season.

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