St. Louis Blues rinkside reporter Andy Strickland dropped some news last night that piqued LA Kings fans’ interest. The Nashville Predators are reportedly shopping superstar forward Filip Forsberg.

A few things here – if true, it’s quite the turnaround from the reported contract extension talks that the Predators have been working toward with the 29-year-old. Forsberg is in the final year of his contract and will become a UFA in the summer. Also, the rumor comes at a really weird time as Nashville currently occupies the first Wild Card spot in the Western Conference. That would mean that the Predators believe they a) don’t have a fighting chance in the playoffs b) don’t feel confident that they can get a deal done with Forsberg.

As it pertains to the Kings, Forsberg voiced his displeasure when the Preds traded his good friend Viktor Arvidsson to Los Angeles last summer with a “thumbs down” tweet. LA could certainly use more finishing ability within their top-six forwards, but they are also strongly linked to a certain Coyotes defenseman. If it were me, I would make the move to acquire Jakob Chychrun at the deadline and then make a hard run at Forsberg in the offseason to avoid giving up additional assets.

Forsberg figures to get a raise from the $6 million AAV on his current contract, and the Kings can make Chychrun and Forsberg work financially, especially with Dustin Brown, Andreas Athanasiou, Alex Edler, and Olli Maatta coming off the books this summer.

  • Speaking of Arvidsson, how good has this guy been lately? Russ dove into the numbers, with the Swedish forward putting up 16 points over his last 18 games, including his two-goal effort on Wednesday.

  • Staying with the Nashville theme here – retired Preds goalie Pekka Rinne will have his number officially retired and raised to the rafters by the organization before Thursday’s game against the Stars.

“This city means so much to me,” Rinne said in his interview on TNT Wednesday. “When I’ve been preparing for tomorrow night, I’ve been reflecting back on my career a lot. I can’t believe it was 16 years ago when I first got here. At the time, I didn’t know anything about the city or anything about the organization, and obviously, now it’s my home. The connection I have with this city and the fanbase, the change this organization has gone through, it’s pretty amazing. I feel fortunate to have been part of it.”

  • Former Anaheim Duck and every Kings fans’ favorite player (lol) Corey Perry reached a significant milestone, scoring his 400th career goal in Tampa’s 5-3 win over the Edmonton Oilers. He became the ninth active player to reach the plateau and also allowed the Kings to leapfrog Edmonton. So, thank you, Corey, I guess.

  • Montreal is the latest team to benefit from a mid-season coaching change, ripping off four straight wins while players like Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield are putting up crazy numbers right now. The latter has eight points in his last six games, coinciding with Martin St. Louis taking over bench boss duties.

“There are guys that take care of the team, and you win a lot of games that way,” Canadiens interim coach Martin St. Louis said. “When you’re up 4-0 and you block shots with one minute left. It’s fun to see how quickly the culture progressed.”

That’s all for today. The Kings are back in action against the Ducks on Friday night from the Honda Center in a game that has playoff implications. Huge two points on the line for both squads.

Hockey Royalty Podcast Episode 52 – David Pagnotta

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