Los Angeles Kings’ Complete Guide to Free Agency

June 29th, 2015 by Carol Schram Leave a reply »
It's no easy task to build a championship-caliber team in the National Hockey League.

Once you get to the top, it's even harder to stay there. Just ask the Los Angeles Kings.

After winning two Stanley Cups in three years, the Kings have tiptoed precipitously along the upper edges of the salary-cap ceiling. Missing the playoffs in 2014-15 made general manager Dean Lombardi's desire to upgrade his team even stronger.

Lombardi engineered an unexpected trade on draft weekend, acquiring power forward Milan Lucic to add more muscle to an already heavy lineup. On July 29, he shocked the hockey world by terminating the contract of 30-year-old center Mike Richards, alleging "a material breach of the requirements of his Standard Player's Contract," per LAKings.com (via NHL.com).

We likely haven't heard the last of the Richards story, but for now, his full contract is off the Kings' books and gives the team an extra $5.75 million to spend when the free-agency window opens Wednesday.

Here's a look at how Los Angeles' situation shakes down.

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