Lupul (foot) won’t play for Leafs Friday

The Toronto Maple Leafs will indeed be without winger Joffrey Lupul against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday, Sportsnet’s Chris Johnston confirms.

To head coach Randy Carlyle’s chagrin, Lupul injured his foot blocking a shot in practice on Friday. He wasn’t wearing shot blockers on his feet in practice.

It’s expected that Josh Leivo will take his spot in the lineup, although more focus will be on the belated season debut of big-ticket free agent acquisition David Clarkson. TSN’s Jonas Siegel reports that Frazer McLaren will also play his first game in 2013-14.

Clarkson appears primed to start out on a line with David Bolland and Mason Raymond.

Lupul’s had a strong start to the 2013-14 season, scoring 10 points – including six goals on 33 shots – in 10 games.

Kings grab goalie insurance by signing Budaj

Peter Budaj, Nick Leddy
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In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.

The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.

At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.

As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.

The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.

All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.

Kings, NHLPA announce settlement in Richards grievance

Los Angeles Kings v New York Rangers

The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”

The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.

The NHLPA released a similar statement.

It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.

We’re starting to find out some details now:

How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?

Stay tuned.