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Jordan Nolan and Jeff Zatkoff Waived by Los Angeles Kings

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The longtime Kings fourth-liner might have played his last game in an LA uniform, while last year’s Opening Night backup goalie will likely battle for a job in Ontario.

Los Angeles Kings v New Jersey Devils Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Jordandy Nolandreoff is (at least for now) no more! Around lunch time on the West Coast, news broke that the Los Angeles Kings have decided to waive Jordan Nolan and Jeff Zatkoff. The Zatkoff move was to be expected; after LA signed Darcy Kuemper and expressed their intention to give Jack Campbell every opportunity to earn the backup role, Zatkoff was clearly going to be on the outside looking in. After last season, it’s hard to imagine another team will pick Zatkoff up off waivers, but he’ll have a chance to re-establish himself in Ontario.

However, it was somewhat surprising to learn that management had decided to waive Nolan because he was the gritty type of player that both Dean Lombardi and Darryl Sutter loved. He was a good soldier who put in his work, never complained, and did what was expected of him. Unfortunately for Nolan, the demand for an enforcer type with limited offensive ability has all but disappeared from the NHL, especially as teams continue to get younger, faster, and more skilled. Also, there’s no more Lombardi, and no more Sutter.

Some may be wondering: why Nolan over Kyle Clifford or Andy Andreoff? That, I don’t have an answer for but management clearly feels that both are a touch better than Nolan is. They’re all fairly interchangeable, but both Clifford and Andreoff are slightly better offensively (and both are two years younger). This improves both of their odds of cracking the Opening Night lineup, and it’s also good news for the Kings’ younger forwards as they attempt to make the roster.

The Kings drafted Nolan in the seventh round of the 2009 NHL Draft, with the 186th overall pick. Since being called up to the NHL in 2012, he’s tallied a total of 20 goals and 22 assists. Oh, and he also won the Stanley Cup twice with LA and had some amazing photos taken with Lord Stanley’s trophy.

Among other notable career highlights, he assisted on the first goal of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final, he got to play against his dad for a brief time, and he scored on Mike Smith! Twice!

Thank you for being a good sport and providing so many highlight reel fights, Jordan, and good luck in your future. There is always a possibility that Nolan will clear waivers and join Zatkoff in Ontario, but despite the way the game is going, a two-time Stanley Cup champion will always be a commodity.