LA Kings: 10 Former Kings Sign Contracts Elsewhere in NHL
As the LA Kings bring in new faces this offseason, a number of former Kings have found new homes. Here is a list of those names.
As the rush of the NHL Free Agency period starts to wane, it seems like as good a time as any to catch up on some old friends and see where some former LA Kings — and Ontario Reign — players ended up signing. In order from most recent, courtesy of Cap Friendly:
Amadio was a 3rd-round draft pick of the Kings in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. He spent parts of seven seasons in the Kings organization both in Los Angeles and in the AHL with the Ontario Reign. Though he was a productive player in Ontario, picking up 104 points in 124 games, he never found the same offensive production with the Kings, scoring just 39 points in 168 games. He was eventually traded to the Ottawa Senators during the 2020-21 season for defenseman Christian Wolanin. For the upcoming season, he’ll stay in Ontario (the Canadian version) as the Toronto Maple Leafs signed him to a one-year, two-way contract that will pay him $750,000 at the NHL level.
The undrafted Luff spent most of his time in the Kings organization with the Reign. He only once eclipsed the 30 point mark with the Reign (31 in 2018-19,) but was certainly a favorite among his teammates during his rookie year in the NHL. The 24-year-old has played in 64 NHL games with Los Angeles, scoring 10 goals and 17 points. His new contract — also a one-year, two-way, $750,000 deal — will likely see him continue being an up-and-down player, this time with the Nashville Predators organization.
The 31-year-old netminder’s time with the Kings, though recent, was extremely brief. He played four games in Ontario during the 2020-21 season, going 1-2-1 with a 4.18 goals-against-average and an .856 save percentage. He did have two starts in L.A., picking up one win — his first in over six years. Like Amadio and Luff, Grosenick will be on a one-year, two-way contract worth $750,000 — his with the Boston Bruins.
Okay, so he hasn’t been with the Kings since 2019, but do we really need an excuse to include Alec Martinez here so we can watch this one more time? The 34-year-old re-upped with the Vegas Golden Knights for three more years at an average annual value (AAV) of $5.25M. No, we don’t enjoy seeing him with the rival Golden Knights, but he can never do any wrong in the eyes of Kings fans. Martinez is coming off a season where he was one of the most productive defensemen at even strength and is still a very good puck-mover from the back end.
Eyssimont was a 5th-round draft pick of the Kings in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and spent just over three seasons with the Ontario Reign. Just under a point-per-game player with St. Cloud State, the Littleton, CO, native hasn’t yet found the same type of offensive success at the pro level so far, picking up 66 points in 122 games. Like Luff, the Kings did not extend a Qualifying Offer to the 24-year-old. He was signed by the Winnipeg Jets to a two-year, two-way contract with an AAV of $750,000.
The one-time future of the Kings goaltending position, Jonathan Bernier has spent the last three seasons with the Detroit Red Wings. Though the former first-round pick hasn’t quite lived up to the 11th-overall hype, he holds a career .913 save percentage and his final year in Detroit had a .914 mark. After being traded as an Unrestricted Free Agent to Carolina, the Hurricanes opted to go a different direction in net. The 32-year-old will get an opportunity in New Jersey after signing a two-year deal worth $4.125M annually with the Devils. MacKenzie Blackwood will see the lion’s share of the net, but Bernier will be a capable backup goaltender.
The third goalie on this list, Martin Jones has spent the last six seasons with the San Jose Sharks. Though he spent five years in the Kings organization, he only started 29 games for the silver-and-black, going 16-11-2 with a 1.99 GAA and .923 SV%. It didn’t go nearly as well in northern California where he posted just a .907 SV% during his tenure there. In what couldn’t be a more perfect fit for a struggling goaltender, Jones was signed by the Philadelphia Flyers on a one-year deal worth $2M. He’ll primarily back up Carter Hart, who had plenty of issues of his own last season, but the Flyers will be hoping for a bounce-back season from the 31-year-old Jones whose only success during 2020-21 was on low-danger shots against.
A long-time fan favorite in Los Angeles, the two-time Stanley Cup champion’s time with the Kings came to an end after the 2019-20 season. He spent last year with the Winnipeg Jets, scoring five goals and 10 points in 56 games. Known more for his strong penalty-killing and ability to play multiple positions while in Los Angeles, the 34-year-old was still a fine defensive forward last season, albeit against some weaker competition. The U.S. Olympian will stay in Canada for the 2021-22 campaign and will re-join Darryl Sutter in Calgary, signing a one-year deal worth $800,000.
Gravel has spent most of his career bouncing between the NHL and AHL. While with the Kings, he spent 149 games in the AHL between Manchester and Ontario, picking up 48 total points. Since the 2018-19 campaign, he’s spent time with both the Edmonton Oilers and Toronto Maple Leafs’ organizations — again, mostly in the AHL in either Bakersfield or with the Marlies. The former 5th-round pick out of the USHL did play 70 games with L.A., scoring one goal and 10 points. Gravel will join Lewis in Calgary, signing a one-year, two-way deal worth $750,000 with the Flames.
A 1st-round draft pick in 2010, Forbort spent parts of eight seasons in the Kings organization, including both the Manchester Monarchs and Ontario Reign in the AHL. He also played 268 games for the Kings at the NHL level. After being traded to Calgary during the 2019-20 season, Fortbort spent last season in Winnipeg. Not known for his offense — the Duluth, MN native has just 65 points in his 331 NHL games — he was still a good defensive defenseman despite playing against some tough competition while with the Jets. He will head to the East coast for the 2021-22 season, signing a three-year-deal with the Boston Bruins worth $9M in total.
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