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Bolstering The Blue Line

by Mike Kalinowski / Los Angeles Kings

General Manager Dean Lombardi and the Kings added size and grit to their blue line when they added veteran defenseman Robyn Regehr to the team’s mix of defensemen at the 2013 trade deadline. The Kings acquired the 33-year-old stay-at-home defenseman from Buffalo in exchange for second round draft choices in 2014 and 2015.

“I was looking for this all year,” said Lombardi. “Two big, physical guys that were clearly part of our identity (Matt Greene and Willie Mitchell) weren’t in our lineup all year and so we had a hole to fill.

“With Robyn, he clearly brings an element that we were missing,” said Lombardi. “With him and Greener back in the lineup we now once again have that mix of puck-movers and hard to play against defensemen. I also think there’s a good chance that we can retain him so this wasn’t looked at as a rental player but as a guy who can fit with us for a number of years.”

“I’m really, really happy for a few different reasons,” said Regehr. “First of all, being in a position to win again and with a team that has proven it can do it in the past and wants to do it again. So I’m very excited about that, and I’m also familiar with Darryl (Sutter) as a coach.

“Darryl is a very demanding coach, and I think any player that plays under him, that’s one of the first things that he would mention,” said Regehr. “But, that being said, when you do the kind of stuff that he asks of you, and you do it well, you put yourself in a position to succeed and also become a very good professional. I’m excited to be back with Darryl and to have this opportunity.”

The 2012-13 season was Regehr’s second season with the Sabres. He made his NHL debut with the Calgary Flames during the 2000-01 season and played 11 seasons overall with the Flames before being traded to Buffalo.

The 6-3, 225-pounder was originally selected by the Colorado Avalanche in the first-round (19th overall) of the 1998 NHL Draft, before being traded to Calgary during the 1998-99 season while playing in Kamloops of the Western Hockey League. During that same 1998-99 season, Regehr represented Canada at the 1999 World Junior Championship, winning a silver medal (7 GP, 0-0-0; 2 PIM).

Regehr, who next season will likely hit 1,000 games played in the NHL, made his NHL debut with Calgary during the 1999-00 season.


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