The 2018-19 LA Kings season started off optimistic, but as the season progressed, management knew that personnel changes would have to be made. The team is now heading towards a younger and faster roster that will be able to compete in this new-age national league.
Thanks to the seven moves they've made, the Kings now have 10 draft picks in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, including all of their own picks, the Toronto Maple Leafs first-round pick, the Washington Capitals third-round pick and the Calgary Flames fourth-round pick.
So, now that the roster has been finalized and the trade deadline has passed, we're looking back on all the transactions from this season:
November 14, 2018 | Traded Tanner Pearson for Carl Hagelin
As this was the first major trade of the year, it was a bit of a wake up call for the team. "If it doesn't affect anybody seeing Tanner traded away, then that's not the type of team we were and we are," Kyle Clifford said. "Guys care here. Those are difficult days. It's tough to explain."
However, this trade ultimately gave the team access to a speedy forward for the majority of the season, where he tallied 5 points (1-4=5).
"This is a change to our line-up that gives us an additional amount of speed," General Manager Rob Blake said. "With Carl Hagelin, his number one asset is speed and getting to holes, and we think he will play a big role on the penalty kill for us going forward."
Video: LAK@DAL: Hagelin chips in rebound from doorstep
Since Hagelin was going to become an unrestricted free agent (UFA), it was in the best interest to move him before the end of the season, which Blake did in late February in exchange for draft picks.
November 21, 2018 | Acquire Pavel Jenys from the Minnesota Wild
Jenys, selected by the Wild in the seventh-round (199th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft, is a 22-year-old (April 2, 1996) native of Brno, Czech Republic.
Listed at 6-2, 203 pounds, Jenys had four goals in nine games (4-0=4) with the Allen Americans before being picked up by the Kings.
On December 4, after playing one game with the Ontario Reign (AHL), Jenys was assigned to the Manchester Monarchs (ECHL). He's since competed in 10 games with the Monarchs and recorded 12 points (5-7=12).
December 2, 2018 | Claimed Nikita Scherbak Off Waivers
Scherbak is a 23-year-old native of Russia who has competed in 29 career NHL games, all with Montreal. Before being claimed by the Kings, he played in five games with the Laval Rocket of the American Hockey League.
In January, Scherbak was assigned to the Reign, where he has competed in thirteen games and tallied five points (2-3=5).
December 3, 2018 | Claimed Brendan Leipsic Off Waivers
Leipsic, a native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, was originally selected by Nashville in the third round of the 2012 NHL Draft after he had 58 points (28-30=58) in 65 games in his second season with Portland of the Western Hockey League.
In 81 career NHL games, the 5-10, 179-pound forward has scored 30 points (8-22=30) with the Toronto Maple Leafs, Vegas Golden Knights and theVancouver Canucks.
Since being picked up from the Canucks, Leipsic has scored two goals notched 10 assists (2-10=12) in 33 games with the Kings.
Video: Inside the one-touch passing from Leipsic to Luff
January 28, 2019 | Acquired 2019 First Round Pick, Two Prospects for Jake Muzzin
Arguably the most notable trade of the season, the Kings sent Muzzin to the Toronto Maple Leafs in exchange for a 2019 first-round pick, in addition to forward Carl Grundstrom and rights to defenseman Sean Durzi.
"We feel this trade was necessary for the future of the organization," said Blake. "Moving Jake was not easy as he has been a key player for us and a significant part of our most historic and memorable achievements. We are grateful for his contributions to the Kings and we wish him the best of luck in the future."
Grundstrom is a 21-year-old forward from Umea, Sweden, who was selected by the Maple Leafs in the second-round in the 2016 NHL Draft. The 6-0, 194-pounder had 13 goals and 29 points (13-16=29) in 42 games as a rookie for the Toronto Marlies. His 13 goals are tied for sixth and his 29 points are tied for ninth among all AHL rookies this season.
On February 1, Grundstrom was assigned to the Reign, where he picked up an assist in his debut. On February 6, he recorded his first multi-point (2-1=3) game in San Diego.
Durzi is a 20-year-old from Toronto who was selected by the Maple Leafs in the second-round in the 2018 NHL Draft.
February 11, 2019 | Acquired a 2019 4th Round Pick in Exchange for Nate Thompson
Thompson, who was going to become a UFA at the end of the season, appeared in 53 games with the Kings this season, posting six points (4-2=6), a plus-3 rating and 17 penalty minutes.
This pick will give the Kings their second fourth-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.
February 21, 2019 | Acquired 2019 3rd Round Pick in Exchange for Carl Hagelin
Hagelin, acquired from the Pittsburgh Penguins earlier this season, has appeared in 22 games with the Kings this season, posting five points (1-4=5) and eight penalty minutes. Hagelin was also set to become a UFA at the end of the season.
This pick will give the Kings their second third round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft.
February 25, 2019 | Acquired 2020 Conditional 4th Round Pick in Exchange for Oscar Fantenberg
Fantenberg signed with the Kings in May 2017 and since then, has appeared in 73 regular-season games over two seasons with the Kings. He posted 12 points (4-8=12) and 21 penalty minutes, and was set to become a UFA at the end of this season.
Mark your calendars: the 2019 NHL Draft will take place in Vancouver, BC from June 21-22, 2019. And we have a feeling the Kings are going to be busy.
Much of the heavy building will be done in the offseason, but until then, the team knows what's expected of them. "The deadline has passed. I want to see them compete," Blake said. "There will be some young guys in there, but our veterans need to lead."