Sunday, August 3, 2008

Doughty to L.A.?

Any GM or fan will tell you that defensemen take longer to develop. Defense is the hardest position to play in the NHL and most defenseman do not come into their own until at least their mid-20's.

The new CBA states that a player drafted in 2008 can become an unrestricted free agent after 7 years of NHL play, or age 27. So my question is, why in the world are the Kings in a hurry to play Thomas Hickey and Drew Doughty, or any other draft pick for that matter so soon?

Drew Doughty will start the season at age 18, potentially making him an unrestricted free agent at age 25! If defensemen don't come into their own at this age anyways, then what is the rush?

GM Dean Lombardi is usually thinking long-term when he makes his decisions. If Drew Doughty goes back to juniors, the Kings can extend his career within the organization to age 27. He is going to make a bigger impact age 26 and 27 than he is at age 18 and 19.

Many people believe that Doughty will be a King on opening night, and that his 2-3 million dollar contract he is expected to receive is a big part of getting to the salary cap floor. If this happens, seven years from now it will be looked back on as a BIG mistake.


rusty.emily said...

"What's the rush?" Have you seen the current roster? Priessing, Johnson, Gauthier, Greene, Harrold....that's it! The UFA market is a bust and I'm sure Deano's burning up the trade wire but until somebody knocks his socks off it's going to be Doughty. From what I hear from the Prospect's Camp, he's ready.

Big Dave said...

I am not questioning whether Doughty is ready or not, he obviously is.

I am questioning burning a year off of his 7 years.

If the Kings are going to be such a powerhouse in 3-5 years, wouldn't you rather have Doughty at age 26 than age 18?

The learning curve is tough for a young defenseman. If you think he is going to come out and score 50 points and lead the team to the playoffs, you have another thing coming.

MJ Kasprzak said...

First, welcome to the site. I wanted those girls to blog for us (see one of the first posts), but hey, it's not like I would be in the room with them anyway!
Second, I think the main reason D-men don't come into their own until 25 is because they are held back. If a guy can't get it down after three years in the league, and MAYBE five if he starts early, you don't have to wait to see what will happen next.

Mike in OC said...

I for one like this plan,

The Ducks can really use him 7 years from now...