Calgary Flames (31-18-5) @ LA Kings (24-21-7)
7:30 PST, Fox Sports West
So, with the emergence of Matt Greene as a legitimate shutdown defender, with the blossoming of Kyle Quincey into an NHL regular, with the explosion of Drew Doughty onto the scene, and with the Kings' scoring woes for the first half of the season...
Should the Kings have held onto Mike Cammalleri (52 points in 53 games)?
Yes. The Kings need goalscorers right now. They have a lot of guys that are pretty good with the puck and have speed, but none of them can snipe like Cammy could. Sure, he was going to leave after the season, but why not hold onto him and see what you could get at the deadline? The Kings could use someone just like Cammalleri to push into the playoffs this season. Plus, it's not like the Kings are really hurting for defensive defenseman right now so Teubert is expendable.
No. The Kings have reshaped their team into one that relies on solid defensive play and good team chemistry. Those were not Cammy's strong suits. He always reminded me of that guy you meet your first day in the dorms that's really nice and let's you bum a beer, only you realize after that whole "I better make friends now before they're all gone" phase of college that he sucks and the only reason he was nice to you is because he didn't have any real friends. Anyway, the Kings weren't going anywhere with him and did well to get a great young defender (Teubert) and a 2nd in next year's draft. He's doing well with Iginla, but there's no guarantee he would have done as well with Jarrett Stoll and Kyle Calder.
I'm personally on the fence on this one. If the Kings had kept Cammy (which was not a position anyone was taking at the time), Oscar Moller would probably be playing in Chilliwack right now. Maybe Dustin Brown wouldn't have been able to assert his leadership like he is doing, and maybe the Kings make the playoffs this season with Cammy on the roster. I don't know; all I know is that when Cammy got traded I didn't care one bit. That's saying something, I think.
Prediction: Kings win against a tired Calgary team*, 4-1. Goals by Kopitar, Brown, Quincey and Simmonds. Oh, and Cammy of course.
*Last night's game against Anaheim was great for 2 reasons: one, Niedermayer scored 2 goals and I can't help but love that guy; and two, Brian Hayward lost his mind when Dion Phaneuf tattooed Adrew Ebbett in the head. To hear the guy that constantly defends Chris Pronger by pointing out that Pronger is taller than everyone else and that's why there seems to be an elbow screaming at Phaneuf (6'3") for hitting Ebbett (5'9" and leaning) high was hysterical to me.