Our countdown to the 2016-17 season continues, with 24 days to go...
I know, I know, you thought you were going to see Trevor Lewis on Day 22. However, when you sign a contract that pays $2 million over 4 years, well, we can shoehorn you in a few days early.
Lewis is one of seven players still on the Kings who were members of the 2009-10 squad; he and Alec Martinez each made brief appearances for a team which featured Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar, Drew Doughty, Matt Greene, and Jonathan Quick in prominent roles. Kopitar, Doughty, and Quick are LA’s core. Brown, Martinez, and Greene have all survived plentiful trade rumors or buyout waivers. Lewis has hovered in between, never a star but never on the fringes. In fact, he just completed his sixth full season, and he’s never missed more than ten games. That seems puzzling for a center who’s rarely played in the top six, never had more than
24 25 points, never won more than 50% of his faceoffs, and has no obvious physical gifts.
Lewis has one point in his favor, though: he plays defense. He held opponents to 24 shots per 60 minutes this season, which is right in line with his career average of 24.6 shots against per 60. Only Nick Shore suppressed shots better than Lewis last season, and only Shore and Marian Gaborik have done it better overall for the Kings in the last six years. With numbers like that, it’s kind of a surprise the World Cup team didn’t consider him. (Justin Abdelkader? If you’re gonna take him, why not let Lewis come along?)
He’s still got his failings, but Lewis can always argue for his prowess on the defensive side of the puck. Combine that with a steady presence in the bottom six of a steady winner, and it makes more sense why the readers voted in his favor after the contract announcement.
Let’s just hope he can up that shooting percentage this season.