While the rumour of Marian Gaborik heading to the West Coast remains just that, the Los Angeles Kings have dipped their feet in the trade pool today as they have acquired defenseman Brayden McNabb from the Buffalo Sabres along with two 2nd-round draft picks in exchange for prospects Hudson Fasching and NIc Deslauriers.
In McNabb, the Kings add a defenseman with size and defensive ability in his corner. While he is set to become a restricted free agent this summer, McNabb stands at 6'4, 205 pounds. While he spent the bulk of this season in the AHL with Rochester, McNabb did enjoy some defensive success during his 12-game stint with the Sabres. During that stretch, McNabb registered 12 blocked shots and 25 hits. While he didn't score any points with the big club, the big D-man did have a +1 rating.
Having just turned 23 in January, McNabb has youth to go along with size. It's unclear as of right now whether he'll go right to Los Angeles or whether he'll kick off his tenure in Manchester with the Monarchs instead. But this is a trade I believe every Kings fan should be excited for. Unfortunately, not every fan is salivating at the news just yet.
While the disappointment from Kings fans isn't personal towards McNabb, fans are upset that Dean Lombardi and the Kings had to part ways with prospects Hudson Fasching and Nic Deslauriers.
Coming off a successful World Juniors tournament when he represented his natibe USA, the 18-year-old Fasching has played admirably in his freshman year at the University of Minnesota. In 31 games thus far, the youngster has scored 12 goals and added 15 assists with the Gophers.
As for Nic Deslauriers, he has come a long way in terms of development. After scoring a total of five goals in his first two season in Manchester, the native of Ville Lasalle, Quebec has notched 18 goals this season to go along with 21 assists and a +4 rating. Defensively, Deslauriers has gotten better as well and while his 6-foot height is average by Kings's standards, his 230-pound frame makes him a daunting force for any opposition. Hopefully, the Buffalo Sabres, along with Fasching, can use the 23-year-old to the best of his ability.
So far, it's just been the one trade for the Kings but a fairly significant one. While I am sorry to see both Fasching and Deslauriers go, I am very excited to see what Brayden McNabb can bring to the table in La La Land.