After spending a sizable amount to acquire him, the Kings are now trying to re-up with Andrej Sekera.
Sekera, acquired from Carolina in a deadline deal — a first-round pick and prospect Roland McKeown went to the ‘Canes — has held “very preliminary discussions” with Los Angeles about a new contract, per LA Kings Insider.
The 28-year-old, in the last of a deal that pays $2.75 million annually, will likely be in line for a raise following a career-high 44 points last year, and a relatively good showing with the Kings this year, despite injury limiting him to just 16 regular-season games.
Of course, it’s unclear how much of a raise the Kings can afford to give.
While NHL commissioner Gary Bettman recently projected a $71.5 million salary cap for next season, there are no guarantees it’ll rise and L.A. already has just over $64 million committed to 17 players… with new deals still needed for RFAs Tyler Toffoli and Martin Jones, and UFAs Justin Williams and Jarret Stoll (the latter’s situation is complex due to a recent drug possession arrest in Las Vegas.)
Despite this, Sekera should still be a priority. With Robyn Regehr done and Slava Voynov’s future still in doubt, the Kings need depth and experience on the back end.
Report: Stoll arrest came during Kings’ ‘unofficial’ season-ending party
Drew Doughty and Martin Jones were two of “more than a dozen” L.A. Kings in Las Vegas at the time of Jarret Stoll’s arrest for cocaine and MDMA possession, per TMZ.
According to TMZ sources, the incident Wet Republic at the MGM Grand occurred during an unofficial team party to wind down the season, though the 32-year-old center was the only player accused of any wrongdoing. The same sources also report that many Kings “continued to party in Vegas throughout the weekend even after Stoll was arrested.”
Stoll was arrested late Friday after going through a security pat-down, and later released on $5,000 bond from the Clark County Detention Center. He reportedly admitted the powdered substance in his possession was cocaine.
PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.
Is Connor McDavid the second coming of Wayne Gretzky? The Great One chuckles at the notion, but agrees McDavid is going to be a game changer. “He’s as good as I’ve seen in the last 30 years, the best player to come into the league in the last 30 years, the best to come along since (Mario) Lemieux and (Sidney) Crosby,” said Gretzky. “He can definitely change a franchise’s fortunes.” (The Edmonton Journal)
Former Toronto Maple Leafs teammates Mikael Tellqvist and Justin Pogge are currently in a head-to-head battle for the Swedish Hockey League’s save of the year. (SHL)
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Some of the sights and sounds from the first Stanley Cup playoff game in Winnipeg since 1996:
Current Lightning GM Steve Yzerman had a huge impact on the Detroit Red Wings leading the franchise to three Stanley Cups. He’s also part of the reason why Pavel Datsyuk is still a member of the Wings. In 2007 Yzerman went to Ken Holland and told the GM to “Absolutely, get it done” with regards to contract negotiations with Datsyuk. Datsyuk eventually signed a seven-year contract worth $6.7 million per season. (Tampa Bay Times)
Todd McLellan, who “mutually agreed” to part ways with the San Jose Sharks on Monday, will have no shortage of offers for his next coaching gig. According to Sportsnet’s Mark Spector, McLellan’s coaching style would be a perfect fit with the Edmonton Oilers. (Sportsnet)
Sidney Crosby was locked out of the Pens’ room ahead of Game 3 on Monday night:
Investigative reporter Rick Westhead has further information on Jarret Stoll’s arrest last week in Las Vegas including the police report. (TSN)