A few of our esteemed commenters have weighed in on yesterday’s surprising acquisition of Ben Bishop by the Los Angeles Kings. It’s time to hear from our crew, as — surprise, surprise — we don’t all agree on the value of Dean Lombardi’s handiwork. Read our opinions below, then vote in our poll!
Robyn: (mixed feelings) I feel like this is a lateral move that doesn't really improve the team immediately. Certainly Budaj has posted better numbers than Bishop this season but the potential for two number one goalies who have high ceilings is at least there while Budaj was already playing above his. Worst case scenario, this gives Kings a proven number one should Quick falter down the stretch. Best case scenario, it allows Sutter to confidently divide the workload should both guys play to their potential. Personally, I would rather they had done everything possible to pry Matt Duchene out of Colorado.
Derek: (don’t like it) Not a fan of the Bishop move. It is poor asset management to give up a recent 2nd round pick who hasn't even made his professional debut, plus maybe more (pending the conditional pick) for Quick insurance. Especially when that insurance may not even be better than what was already on hand. Budaj has flat out been better than Bishop this year, was cheap, and already here. Hey Peter, thanks for saving the season, have fun missing the playoffs.
JJ: (wait and see) Peter Budaj outperformed himself to keep the Kings in contention (2.12 GAA and 7 shutouts!), and it's cruel to see how a few bad recent outings cost him his job. I blame the incompetence of Jeff Zatkoff for the demise of one of LA's more likable players. To me the Bishop trade means one thing--Jonathan Quick is still not fully healed. I understand Erik Cernak is unnecessary, but I don't like the use of precious cap space for a #1B goalie when offense is the glaring need. What's more interesting is what the Kings will do with Bishop--a package-and-trade before the deadline, a trade after the season, or (gasp) even a trade of the increasingly fragile Quick?
James: (like it) Overall, I like the deal. The clock had clearly hit midnight on Peter Budaj, and there is simply no telling how Jonathan Quick will hold up. With four back to backs remaining and a brutal stretch to end March, I can get behind the logic of "two number 1's." The cost in assets was pretty low, especially in light of the going rate for even low-end goal scoring forwards (Martin Hanzal). It's easy to criticize Dean for not focusing on goal scoring, but I can already envision the freakout that would have occurred had he actually paid the going rate for Duchene, Gabriel Landeskog, etc. Think our picks/prospects pool is thin now? Best to shore up in goal, hope for a PDO bump, and then reassess post-July 1.
Sarah: (mixed feelings/wait and see) After an initial irritated tweet-storm when the trade was announced, I think I finally settled on "meh" as a reaction. It's kind of an unnecessary move, as goaltending hasn't been the Kings' main problem this year. But it likely doesn't make the team worse, gives them a playoffs-experienced goalie in case Jonathan Quick's injury flares up again, and gives away minimal assets. While Bishop has been trending downward, he's still a strong goalie and will make a more than capable backup or 1B to Quick for the final stretch of the season. This trade will probably be more accurately judged on what other moves Dean Lombardi makes (does he find a scoring winger?) and what he does with Bishop after the season is over (two aging starters hasn't worked out too well for Dallas, just saying).
All right, your turn. Vote below, and if you’d like, leave your two cents in the comments.