When we look back at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, it’s quite possible that the Anaheim Ducks will be heralded for getting a steal in 12th overall pick Cam Fowler. Many expected the offensively talented defenseman to go as early as No. 3 behind shoo-in forwards Taylor Hall and Tyler Seguin but instead Fowler dropped to the Ducks.
The team announced that they signed their first round pick to a three-year entry-level contract, though financial details were not revealed. Here is more about Fowler’s impressive pre-NHL career.
Fowler, 18 (12/6/91), collected 8-47=55 points with a +38 rating and 14 penalty minutes (PIM) in 55 games with the Windsor Spitfires of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) in 2009-10. Fowler ranked seventh among OHL defensemen in scoring to help Windsor finish first in its conference during the regular season. The 6-1, 190-pound blueliner also added 3-11=14 points with 10 PIM in 19 OHL Playoff games, helping the Spitfires to their second consecutive OHL championship and second straight Memorial Cup as junior hockey champions.
As a member of Team USA, Fowler won a gold medal at both the 2010 IIHF World Junior Championship and 2009 IIHF U-18 World Championship, where he was named the tournament’s top defenseman.
Defensemen usually take some time to develop (unless you’re a physical freak like Drew Doughty of the Los Angeles Kings), so I wouldn’t be surprised if it takes Fowler a while to make it to the NHL level. Don’t be surprised if Fowler ends up being the next franchise defenseman in Anaheim in the near future, though, especially since the team already moved on from Hall-of-Fame caliber cornerstones Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger.
The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.
Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.
Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.
“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”
Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:
- He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
- Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
- The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.
Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.
Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?
Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.
Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.
Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.
Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).
A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:
Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.
It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.
After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.
Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.