Last week, one of the newest LA Kings, Phillip Danault, appeared on All the Kings Men to discuss joining his new club.
When the NHL’s free agency period opened on July 28, the LA Kings wasted no time getting busy. After acquiring Viktor Arvidsson from Nashville a few weeks earlier, the silver-and-black bolstered their forward corps even more with the signing of two-way centerman Phillip Danault.
Danault, who signed a six-year $33-million contract with the Kings, came off a very impressive postseason where his defensive prowess helped the Montreal Canadiens reach their first Stanley Cup Final since 1993. Needless to say, the signing incited a plethora of excitement for the Kings and their fanbase for both the short- and long-term pictures.
Just last week, Danault appeared as a guest on the All the Kings Men podcast to discuss signing with the Kings, particularly what piqued his interest most as well as touching briefly on the last time his home province’s Canadiens were in the Cup Final prior to 2021. After all, the Victoriaville, Que., native was just a few months old when the Habs last won hockey’s Holy Grail, defeating none other than the Kings in the ’93 Final.
“I was aware but not about [the rivalry in ’93],” Danault admitted of the Kings-Canadiens feud. “I was actually surprised about that. Sometimes life is a little funny with weird things, but yeah, I’m really proud to be in L.A. even though Montreal won in ’93.”
Switching to present-day matters, Cohen and Dooley asked Danault about signing with the Kings and what appealed to him most about joining his new team.
“Obviously, L.A. was– honestly, [they] were the team most interested in me,” Danault said. “[The Kings] were showing me some love, they were showing me my role and that they care about me. They see me long-term here as a huge part of the team and yeah, they really believed in me the way I was seeing myself for the rest of my career.”
The 28-year-old continued, expressing his determination to be one of the Kings’ strongest additions.
“They know what I can give and they won’t be pissed about that signature,” a matter-of-fact Danault added. “Like, I’ll give what I have every single night, and obviously, I think they watched me a lot during the season and the last couple of years. I’m really proud to be [in Los Angeles] and like I said, they were the team that sent out the most to get me and I really liked their approach, and I like their young team with all those veterans they have like Kopi, Brown, Quickie, and Doughty. So, those guys won the Stanley Cup twice, so they have [a] great mature group with a young group of guys, as well. So, great mix, and I’m really happy to be there for six years because I see this team going up slowly but surely, so it’s great timing for myself.”
As Danault continued, it was evident that he is eager for what’s to come in Los Angeles.
“I wanted to be part of a great franchise with a great group of young guys and also a franchise that believes in me,” the center noted. “They see me with a big role, which L.A. was, like, the perfect fit, even though I never thought about it. I honestly never thought about it all year. Then, just like that, I had a meeting with Luc Robitaille, Rob Blake, and Todd McLellan, and they just showed me the way they think their future’s going to be and where they see me in the [depth] chart and it was a great fit, and like I said, they showed me so much love, so it was a no-brainer, for sure.”
Be sure to give the entire episode of All the Kings Men a listen as they cover much more with the Kings’ biggest offseason signing. The former even showcases his French-speaking skills to kick things off, so don’t miss it.