Here are the 15 best and worst non-entry level contracts signed by the LA Kings since the NHL had a salary cap. This is a two-time Stanley Cup winning team so extra consideration is given for championship contracts. Conversely, Cup winning contracts are not eligible for the worst list, which did present some challenges finding enough qualified contracts by the end.
1- Drew Doughty, Sep 30 2011, 8 years $56M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. LA tried to play hardball and get Doughty to sign a smaller contract. Truth of the matter is he’s worth whatever you pay him. They won 2 Stanley Cups and got a Norris trophy on this contract that’s not even over yet.
2- Anze Kopitar, Oct 11 2008, 7 years $47.6M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. This contract produced a Selke trophy, 2 Stanley Cups, and 45 playoff PTS in those two championship seasons. Enough said.
3- Jonathan Quick, Oct 23 2009, 3 years $5.4M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He won a Stanley Cup and was the playoff MVP. Bargain.
4- Justin Williams, Feb 27 2011, 4 years $14.6M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. They won 2 Stanley Cups where he scored 19 playoff goals on this contract. Do his regular season stats even matter?
5- Dustin Brown, Oct 26 2007, 6 years $19M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. They won 2 Stanley Cups where he scored 14 playoff goals on of this contract. Do his regular season stats even matter?
6- Jake Muzzin, Oct 16 2014, 5 years $20M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. When Muzzin signed this deal, he was 25 years old coming off 40 regular season PTS, 12 playoff PTS and a Stanley Cup. The fact that LA got him to sign for 5 years at this price is a bit remarkable.
7- Jonathan Quick, Jun 28 2012, 10 years $58M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. That’s a pretty good price for a goalie who had just won the playoff MVP. They won another Stanley Cup on this contract too. Even if his skills start to erode in the back half of the contract and he starts to wear down, they have already received good value for their money.
8- Jake Muzzin, July 12 2013, 2 years $2M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He played a meaningful role in a Stanley Cup win for a bargain price. In the regular season, he scored 65 PTS in 152 GP.
9- Alexander Frolov, Aug 12 2005, 5 years $14.5M: Signed by Dave Taylor. You’d be forgiven if you had forgotten that Alex Frolov scored 302 PTS in 380 GP for LA on this contract.
10- Matt Greene, Oct 17 2008, 5 years $14.8M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. Greene may have been a bit expensive for the little offense he provided, but he did help them win 2 Stanley Cups.
11- Anze Kopitar, Jan 1 2016, 8 years $80M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. This may once again look like a bad contract soon enough, but he had a huge bounce back season in year two, picking up his 2nd Selke Trophy.
12- Jack Johnson, July 17 2009, 2 years $2.8M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. JJ scored 78 PTS in 162 GP at a bargain price.
13- Alec Martinez, Dec 3 2014, 6 years $24M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. With half this contract completed, Martinez has scored 95 PTS in 237 GP while averaging 22 minutes per game for the Kings.
14- Tanner Pearson, May 9 2017, 4 years $15M: Signed by Rob Blake. Pearson scored 24 Goals before signing this contract, then dropped down to 15 in year one. He’s still young with plenty of upside, even if he was a bit of a disappointment at the start of this deal.
15- Mike Cammalleri, Aug 7 2007, 2 years $6.7M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. No Stanley Cups but that’s a good price for 129 PTS in 144 GP.
1- Marian Gaborik, June 26 2014, 7 years $34M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. It’s an enormous risk signing a 32-year-old player to a 7-year contract, especially one with an injury history. Gaborik’s production has plummeted since winning the Cup in 2014.
2- Mattias Norstrom, March 6 2006, 2 years $8.5M: Signed by Dave Taylor. In year one of this contract his point production dropped by more than half, scoring 11 PTS in 76 GP with a -18. The Kings were able to dump the contract on Dallas for a decent return before the bottom fell completely out.
3- Tom Preissing, July 2 2007, 4 years $11M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. By year 2 of this contract he was playing in the AHL. He was eventually bought out.
4- Dan Cloutier, Sep 27 2006, 2 years $6M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He played more AHL than NHL games on this contract.
5- Matt Greene, June 24 2014, 4 years $10M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. Greene scored 11 PTS in 111 GP before being bought out.
6- Dustin Brown, July 18 2013, 8 years $47M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. By the end of his last contract his production had declined by half. That’s a lot to pay for a 30-point player. He’s got a lot of hard miles on the odometer. He managed to have a nice bounce back season in year four. We’ll see if he can sustain that at age 33 with 4 years left.
7- Patrick O’Sullivan, Oct 7 2008, 3 years $8.7M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He went from 53 PTS (last year entry level) to 43 PTS year one to 34 PTS to bought out.
8- Michal Handzus, July 2 2007, 4 years $16M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. With cap inflation, this is $5.8M AAV in 2017 numbers. That’s way too much for a 40-point player.
9- Kyle Calder, July 3 2007, 2 years $5.4M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. I think they were planning for more than 47 PTS in 139 GP out of this contracts that was closer to $4M AAV accounting for cap inflation.
10- Alexei Ponikarovsky, July 27 2010, 1 year $3.2M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. 15 PTS in 61 GP is not what you paid for.
11- Rob Blake, July 1 2006, 2 years $12M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. Blake did manage to put up 65 PTS over 143 GP to finish his career over age 35, and he was also -45. When you adjust for cap inflation, that’s like a $10.7 AAV in 2018 numbers.
12- Teddy Purcell, July 1st 2016, 1 year $1.6M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He played more games in the AHL than NHL.
13- Tom Gilbert, July 1 2016, 1 year $1.4M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. Gilbert played most of this contract in the AHL.
14- Ladislav Nagy, July 2 2007, 1 year $3.8M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. Nagy did put up 26 PTS in 38 GP in an injury shortened season. In that sense this is not a terrible contract, I’m just running out of bad deals to choose from. Nagy never played another NHL game.
15- Alyn McCauley, July 2 2006, 3 years $6M: Signed by Dean Lombardi. He played 10 games scoring 1 point before injuries ended his career. On the bright side, he did become a pro scout for the Kings, helping them win 2 Cups.