L.A.

Kings’ GM reacts to Milan Lucic trade with Bruins

The Los Angeles Kings made a big splash in the hours ahead of the NHL Entry Draft, acquiring rugged power forward Milan Lucic from the Boston Bruins for goaltender Martin Jones, defender Colin Miller and the 13th overall selection in this year’s draft (with which the Bruins later selected defenseman Jakub Zboril).

Lucic, a 6-foot-4, 235-pound left wing who will be an unrestricted free agent next summer, will most likely be slotted onto a line with playmaking center Anze Kopitar and speedy Marion Gaborik, giving the Kings’ an imposing offensive zone presence, and presenting difficult matchups for opponents.

“I do think every player on our team just grew three inches and put on 10 pounds of muscle,” Kings’ general manager Dean Lombardi said Friday on a conference call, quoted by Lisa Dillman in the Los Angeles Times. “So that don’t hurt.”

The Kings will have a little salary cap relief with the deal, and the Bruins will pick up $2.75 million of Lucic’s $6 million salary for next season. Still, the trade does present some risk for the Kings if they can’t sign Lucic to a contract extension.

Lucic, 27, has spent his entire eight year career with the Bruins, who drafted him in the second round, 50th overall, in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. In 566 NHL regular season games, he has scored 139 goals and 342 total points. He was a key contributor of the 2011 Bruins squad that won the Stanley Cup, scoring five goals and dishing seven assists on their playoff run.

Photo Credit: Lori Shepler/Associated Press

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Ray Hartjen

A Public Relations pro by day, by night @RayHartjen follows parallel - yet somehow still often conflicting - paths searching for hair metal guitar legend status, a career as a journeyman 4th line center in the NHL, and the treasured laminates to be a hanger-on in the circus that is Formula 1.
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