When Daniel Carcillo was acquired from the Chicago Blackhawks, the consensus opinion was that a current forward on the Los Angeles Kings was on his way out. Over the next couple days, one name emerged as the most likely trade option: Kyle Clifford.
Reiterating what @DennisTFP reported last night... The Kings are actively shopping Kyle Clifford, but nothing imminent as of this morning.— David Pagnotta (@TheFourthPeriod) July 17, 2013
And yet, days passed with no news, and it seemed that the Kings hadn't found a team willing to offer a good price. From there, the priority became signing Clifford first and asking the roster questions later. John Hoven (who's been on top of this entire situation) confirmed today that Clifford has agreed with the Kings on a two-year contract. And the intent is not to let go of Clifford, at least initially...
FYI - The Clifford deal is not a sign a trade.— The Mayor John Hoven (@mayorNHL) August 2, 2013
This allows the Kings to bide their time and watch training camp competitions play out; given that they have until the start of the season to get rid of two players and cut their payroll, there's no reason to rush things now.
As for Clifford: we looked at him as part of our 2013 review series just a few days ago, and you can read the evaluation here. Clifford somewhat exceeded expectations last season, matching career highs in goals, assists, and points despite the shortened season. If he stays, Clifford's role is likely going to be on the fourth line, with occasional shifts on the second and third lines depending on injuries or performance.
Next week, we'll post a sequel to our Choose Your Troops thread so you can weigh in on what the Kings should do next.
[UPDATE: As announced by Jon Rosen, the contract pays Clifford $2.15 million over two seasons.]