I was kinda hoping that I wouldn't have to admit this. But then Dean Lombardi went ahead and actually traded for a player that could fill a significant hole in the Los Angeles Kings offense instead of a player that would just increase the amount of kosher meals on the charter plane. So tonight, Dustin Penner makes his Kings debut against the Phoenix Coyotes.
Well, at least Penner is still dressing like he's in Edmonton.
This is LA, act like you've been there before.
Even if Thursday nights game was part of my Half Season Ticket Holder Package (which it ain't) I wouldn't be able to see Dustin Penner's debut in person. For I am on the East Coast for most of March. Which means my Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy does what any best friend would do.
He goes to the games alone and places this reasonable facsimile of me in the seat next to him.
So imagine my surprise when I find out that Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy went to last Monday's disaster against the Red Wings with a brand new friend.
You are fucking dead to me, Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy.
A friend of ours is a die-hard Detroit Red Wings fan and had arranged for his adult hockey team (which features players all from Michigan... annoying right?) to get a special group package where they get to hang out deep in the bowels of Staples Center and meet some of the players. And he just happened to have 2 extra passes at game time. Which means Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy got to do this:
We don't have official confirmation, but he was pretty sure
that the hot chick in the heels was with Jarret Stoll.
So thankfully, Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy won't get a chance tonight to sit on the bench with the newly acquired Dustin Penner, as the first time he'll be able to see Penner in Person will be Saturday against the Vancouver Canucks. So as Kings fans, what are we to expect tonight from the brand-new 1st Line Left Wing, Dustin Penner?
This, but hopefully without the 3 Doors Down playing in the background.
Dustin Penner is a big body on the left wing who has averaged 24 goals a season during his NHL career. And he's never played with a center of the caliber of Anze Kopitar. On paper, it seems like the perfect fit. But every time the Kings try to make a move to improve the team, with the exception of one trade, they tend not to work out so well.
99 games as a King. 102 points.
Lots of points. But lots of headaches.
18 games, 6 points.
15 games, 1 point.
19 games. 8 points.
If you were to put the potential of the Dustin Penner deal in the terms of a Los Angeles Kings trade made in the last 10 years... then it would also end with the letter P.
I miss you, boo.
Ziggy Palffy came to the Kings in a 1999 trade at the NHL Entry Draft. He went on to play 5 seasons, 311 games with 340 points. By no means do I imply that Penner and Palffy are the same type of player... Palffy missed 99 games with injuries as a King, while Penner has only missed 5 games since 2006. But after the Palffy trade, the Kings went on a 3 season playoff run. And until their playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks in 2010... that was the last time the Kings had a taste of the post-season.
According to Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy,
these jerseys were on sale against Detroit.
Somewhere, Eric Belanger is spinning in his grave.
Jay over at Low On Oil has this to say about how Dustin Penner will fit in with the Kings:
Outside of Edmonton, Penner's a very underrated player IMO. Last year, he had 32 goals playing on the worst team in the league with piss poor linemates.
This year, he hasn't seemed too motivated playing on the Oilers, but he plays harder when games count or when he had a chance to make the Canadian Olympic team.
Penner's going to be huge for the Kings. He can take faceoffs, kill penalties, he has soft hands, and he's an eclipse in front of the net on the powerplay. He's a mountain of man and he never gets injured. He certainly doesn't play like Dustin Brown, so you won't see many big hits, but he uses his size effectively to create offense.
While the creative team over at JeanShorts and Bagged Milk had this take on the 134th trade between the Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings.
Well let’s be honest, LA wins this trade right now because they got the best player. The only way Edmonton comes out on top is if Penner walks after next season and tests out the UFA market OR the Oilers get a steal of a player with LA’s first.
While I do agree that it stings to not get an NHL ready player back in the deal, the Edmonton Oilers were a 30th place team with Dustin Penner. And naturally, the Kings were offering up a guy like Simmonds but Tambellini declined the offer, saying "No no, picks and prospects is all we need. Thanks." The truth is, none of you fucking idiots know what was said when LA and Edmonton were throwing this deal down. For all we know, Penner could have told Tambellini that he would like to get out of town because new wifey would prefer to be on the beach, but he would tell everyone just how awesome Edmonton is in the mean time.
Good God, you would think that Dustin Penner was Wayne Gretzky with how pissed off some Oilers fans are. What is funniest, to me, about this whole situation is that almost all of you that are super pissed today were just as pissed about Penner as a player over his tenure as an Oiler. If Tambellini had made this trade before the start of the 2009/2010 season, how many of you would have been calling for a bronze Tambellini statue?
Talk is cheap. And tonight at Staples Center, the Dustin Penner Era begins. And away we go!
"So, Coach. Some of the guys were telling me that you don't like to smile."
"Listen, I know it sounds like a crazy idea. But I love you. And I love him.
It could be fun for the 3 of us... what do you think?"