Milan Lucic may have only been a member of the Los Angeles Kings for one season, but at least one teammate is sad to see him go. Right-winger Tyler Toffoli lamented the loss of “a great player, a great guy to have in the room”. Toffoli scored a career-best 58 points last season on a line with Lucic and center Jeff Carter, who posted 62 points to tie his third best career output, and best since 2011.
Lucic, of course, signed a seven-year contract worth $42MM with the Edmonton Oilers on July 1, citing a team on the rise and some rookie named Connor McDavid as his main reasons for heading north. OilersNation’s Jonathan Willis broke down how Oilers fans can expect Lucic to age over the course of his contract, and ultimately concluded Lucic will be very effective in his first three seasons, has a two-thirds chance at being effective in the next two seasons, and has a 50-70 per cent chance at posting below 30 points in his final two seasons. However, Lucic told Steve Ewen of The Province that he plans “on playing them out to the best of my ability and, hopefully, I can add another year or two once this contract is done”.
Here are some other news and notes from around the NHL:
- Speaking of players who could retire, Jared Clinton of The Hockey News explored a few big names who could be entering their final season in the NHL. We could be seeing the last of several former superstars, including Jarome Iginla, Shane Doan, Andrei Markov, and Mark Streit. Iginla has seen his point totals fall by 13 over the last three seasons. Doan has an understanding with GM John Chayka which allows him to take his time on deciding about returning or retiring, and its clear he has no interest in chasing Stanley as a rental. The KHL is a possibility for Markov, who will no longer have the speedy P.K. Subban to cover for his aging speed. Similarly, Streit has previously played in his native Switzerland, and could return next summer. Clinton also mentions the legendary Jaromir Jagr, but seeing as Jagr insists on playing until he’s 60, it’s hard to think he’ll willingly retire unless his production drops off or he suffers a serious injury.
- Finally, today marks 28 years since “The Trade”. On August 9, 1988, the Edmonton Oilers traded Wayne Gretzky, Mike Krushelnyski, and Marty McSorley to Los Angeles for Jimmy Carson, Martin Gelinas, three first round picks over six years, and most notable (or infamously) $15 million cash. Edmonton fans reacted as expected, burning the team’s owner in effigy and threatening to cancel season tickets; a Member of Parliament even suggested the federal government block the trade. The blockbuster popularized and legitimized hockey in non-traditional markets and lead to a popular comment around the trade deadline “well, if Wayne Gretzky can be traded…”