Just as I was finishing writing about the deal that brought defenseman Brayden McNabb to SoCal, the Los Angeles Kings finalized their deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets to acquire veteran forward Marian Gaborik.
The deal is done but what most fans in Los Angeles were worried about, yours truly included, was who the Kings would give up in return. The answer: two conditional draft picks and Matt Frattin.
Of course, I'd be lying if I said that the only aspect of this deal I was worried about was who'd they trade to Columbus. Before that, I was reluctant about the Kings acquiring a player who, despite his enormous talent, is prone to getting hurt - and someone coming off a collarbone injury.
Gaborik, who just turned 32 on Valentine's Day, was limited to just 22 games this season but did score six goals and eight assists during that time. Those numbers may not be overly impressive but the Slovakian's scoring rate this season has been better than that of some of the current Kings. In addition, Gaborik brings something to the table that the silver-and-black don't have much of: speed. That coupled with his 6'1, 204-pound frame could come in handy down the stretch.
Financially, Gaborik is making a whopping $7.5 million this season but is an unrestricted free agent this summer. While Kings' GM Dean Lombardi has never been crazy about trading for rentals, that might be just what Gaborik will be for the Los Angeles Kings. After all, Lombardi didn't have to give up too much: the two conditional picks and a player.
Speaking of said player, sending Matt Frattin to Columbus means no more of the Jonathan Bernier trade compensation in Los Angeles after Ben Scrivens was traded to Edmonton in January. While that news does sound unfortunate, it's not. Despite my initials hope and belief, Matt Frattin has been nothing short of a colossal disappointment during his stay in Los Angeles. I don't mean to sound as harsh as I do but when a team trades a bona fide starter in Jonathan Bernier, one would hope that whoever they receive in return will help out their new club. While Scrivens did do his part earlier in the season, Frattin just wasn't effective at all with this new team.
After putting up 13 points in 25 games for Toronto during the lockout-shortened season last year, Frattin scored just two goals and four assists in 40 games with the silver-and-black this season. Plus, with his departure, the Kings are left with one less pending RFA to deal with. They do, however, still have Dwight King and Linden Vey in that category.
It's unknown whether this is the last of the trades for the 2012 Stanley Cup champions but Marian Gaborik is now the newest member of the Los Angeles Kings.