Heading into their Western Conference Final showdown against the top-seeded Chicago Blackhawks, the Los Angeles Kings managed to make news with a move from their front office, rather than what is actually taking place on the ice. One relatively new player is going to be around a bit longer than expected.
The Kings signed defenseman Robyn Regehr to a contract extension. Regehr was acquired by the Kings at the trade deadline, as LA was looking for a stay-at-home type blue liner to add to the mix, having dealt with injuries for much of the year. In Regehr, they found exactly what they were looking for.
It hasn’t always been that easy for Regehr, who has looked like a pylon in his own end at times. But the reviews for him in his time in Hollywood have been very solid overall. He hasn’t added much of anything on the stat sheet, with only two points in a dozen games with Los Angeles, but that’s not why he was brought in.
He was brought in to be that defensive zone presence. The Kings wanted someone who could play a sturdy defense, providing the physical stuff and blocking some shots. Regehr has filled that need just as the Kings have needed him to, resulting in him being rewarded with a contract extension.
The deal is actually going to see Regehr take a paycut. He’ll go from cap hit that was a touch over $4 million to a two-year deal worth $6 million total. That’s a pretty favorable deal for the Kings. But is it the right move for them?
That question is relatively simple to answer. Not including Regehr, the Kings only had three defenseman under contract for next season. And one of them is Willie Mitchell, who might not be ready to return in time for next year to begin, if he returns at all. Keeping Regehr would potentially close the book on Rob Scuderi‘s time in LA, which wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.
This isn’t a high risk move. It’s a short term, pretty favorable deal for a defenseman that just turned 33. You know what you’re getting out of him. He’s proven himself in his time with the Kings, and this is a deal that should end up working out well for them.