Los Angeles has added some depth to its banged-up blue line, acquiring defenseman Keaton Ellerby from the Florida Panthers for the fifth-round draft pick the Kings got from New Jersey for Andrei Loktionov.
Ellerby, 24, has no points in nine games this season while logging an average of 15:11. The 10th overall pick in the 2007 draft has 17 points (2G, 15A) in 125 career games.
Ellerby — a pending restricted free agent on a one-year $700,000 contract — is expected to join his new team in Nashville, where it lost 3-0 to the Predators last night.
The trade shouldn’t come as a surprise. Kings GM Dean Lombardi has been working the phones in search of blue-line help. His team is currently without the services of Willie Mitchell (knee) and Matt Greene (back).
“Right now we have to operate on the premise Willie and Greener are done for the year,” Lombardi told Lisa Dillman of the Los Angeles Times.
“If [Mitchell] comes back it’s a tremendous bonus. If not, we can’t continue to rely on that. We’ve got to get in that mindset.”
‘No structural damage, no setback’ for Mitchell
Greene out until at least late March
In some ways, it really felt like their first-round series.
For all the talent on both ends of the rink with the Detroit Red Wings and Tampa Bay Lightning, each squad can really smother opponents defensively when things go that way.
Through two periods, the two teams were very quiet. Things really picked up when Justin Abdelkader unleashed a big hit, a moment that injected enough life into the proceedings for the Red Wings to eventually build a 3-1 win.
Maybe they’re slipping under the radar a bit compared to previous iterations of the team, but it’s interesting that the Red Wings are now undefeated in three games.
They’ve been impressive at times, too, outscoring opponents by a combined score of 11-4.
Call it a refreshing time after Mike Babcock or merely carryover from a subtly solid run last season, but either way, the Red Wings may just be able to keep up their end of a brewing rivalry.
Taking three games to score your first NHL goal isn’t a big deal, unless you’re someone like Connor McDavid.
The mega-hyped wunderkind must feel relieved to finally find the net, as he tied tonight’s Edmonton Oilers – Dallas Stars skirmish with a 2-2 deflection goal, which you can watch above this post’s headline.
To no surprise, there were plenty of reactions, including Pierre LeBrun’s tweet (which inspired part of this headline).
Of course, there were the inevitable Wayne Gretzky comparisons:
Interesting thing you might not consider: Stars fans will have to stomach this one even more frequently than that time Patrik Stefan biffed that empty-netter (also against the Oilers):
McDavid may have also delivered his first questionable check, too: