Now that the initial shock has worn off, we're curious to see what everyone thinks of the trade the Los Angeles Kings made yesterday. As we learned in three stages yesterday: (1) the Kings made a move to acquire aging center Vincent Lecavalier and defenseman/former objection of LA's affection Luke Schenn; (2) the Kings sent back AHL superstar Jordan Weal and a third-round pick in next year's draft; (3) the Kings got Philadelphia to keep half the combined salary cap hit in the deal. Quite a bit to take in, though Nick put together his thoughts in the initial announcement.
Here's what we've all learned since that initial announcement.
- Lecavalier had to assure the Kings he was retiring after the 2015-16 season. The Lecavalier contract was widely thought to be untradeable, given that Lecavalier was being paid $4.5 million a year through 2018 to be, at best, a third line center. (More on that in a sec.) The Kings and Flyers made it work, but with one key condition: LA was not willing to take on two and a half years of Vinny, for obvious reasons. (Those reasons being "Kopitar" and "he's old," in that order.) That led to this:
#LAKings made it clear they couldn't do deal unless Vinny agreed to retire after the season, not with Kopitar extension & poss. Lucic deal.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) January 7, 2016
However, no document could be signed guaranteeing Lecavalier would retire. #LAKings had to take him at his word.— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) January 7, 2016
- Schenn is seen as a direct replacement for Matt Greene. Lombardi said as much on a conference call yesterday. By the direct numbers it bears out; Schenn has never scored more than 22 points in a season, but he had 194 hits last year in just 58 games. Schenn was a second-pairing PK guy for Philly (fourth in SH TOI per game) and seems likely to fill the same role here. Is he an upgrade or a downgrade on Greene? We'll do some research and get back to you, but Greene really wasn't bad last year.
- The Kings potentially see Lecavalier as a third line center. That's via Pierre LeBrun, so don't take it as gospel, but we should know after a few games if this is where Darryl Sutter intends to use the new acquisition. Broad Street Hockey thinks this is hilarious. Me? I don't see him as an upgrade centering Dustin Brown and Dwight King and would be surprised to see him hold that spot when Jeff Carter returns.
- Luke (and his brother Brayden) knew about a possible trade last night. That and more in this interview with the former (not future) King, including the money quote about Luke getting a chance on "a contending team":
- However, the Kings had been looking at this type of deal since August.
Does that mean LA might have been willing to get more than one year of Vinny? (shudder) Of course, not getting the trade done then helped Nick Shore establish himself in the lineup, and who knows whether Michael Mersch would even be in LA if Vinny had been here.
Kings had kicked the tires on the Lecavalier idea last August.... Kings were intrigued but let it go for a while....— Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) January 6, 2016
Now it's time to get your opinion the morning after. Vote below!