Jeff Carter

Which teams could be interested in Jeff Carter?


There’s no shortage of reasons for NHL general managers to pass on Jeff Carter at the trade deadline. The Columbus forward is injury-prone, his attitude has been called into question, he’s earned a reputation for partying a little too hearty, and last but not least, there’s his contract that stretches all the way through 2021-22 with a cap hit of $5.3 million.

All that said, TSN insider Darren Dreger isn’t convinced Carter’s untradeable.

The L.A. Kings have moderate interest. The Calgary Flames may take a run, though contractually it’s hard to imagine how Jay Feaster finds the fit. And as much as Leafs GM Brian Burke loathes the mega-contracts, Jeff Carter is the player Toronto is looking for in a lot of ways.

The Kings speculation makes a certain amount of sense, as L.A. needs scoring badly. Plus, it would allow Carter to reunite with his old Flyers teammate, Mike Richards. (Sure, those two were a little out of control when they were together in Philadelphia, but when was the last time anyone partied in Los Angeles?)

Calgary? Seems unlikely, but the Flames did make a run at Brad Richards over the summer, plus Olli Jokinen’s a pending UFA.

Dreger rightly notes the Leafs are in desperate need of a first-line center like Carter, and have been for a while. The holdup would be the contract – both the length and the front-loaded structure. Burke has been among the most uppity outspoken when it comes to that kind of contract.

“These deals that are front-end loaded and have small amounts on the back end in my opinion are designed to circumvent the salary cap,” Burke said during the summer. “I won’t do them, I never have, I’m not going to.”

One last team I’ll throw out there (after which I’ll get ridiculed in the comments section) is Washington. No, not just because Nicklas Backstrom is out indefinitely with a concussion – that’s a short-term problem (hopefully). And yes, Carter’s a center – but he can play the wing.

Adding Carter would obviously give Washington another goal-scoring threat, which could subsequently take some of the opponent’s defensive focus off Alex Ovechkin. But it would also allow the Caps to let Alex Semin walk away on July 1, or even trade him prior to the deadline.

Kings GM says Mike Richards went into ‘a destructive spiral’

Mike Richards

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.

… Yeah.

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?

Coyotes exploit another lousy outing from Quick

Jonathan Quick
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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.