LOS ANGELES – The 2012 Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings have signed defenseman Thomas Hickey, forward Stefan Legein, forward David Meckler and defenseman Jake Muzzin to one-year contracts, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi announced today.
Hickey, 23, had 26 points (3-23=26), 36 penalty minutes and a plus-16 rating in 76 regular season games with the Manchester Monarchs (AHL) this past season. His plus-16 rating led the entire team while his 26 points and 23 assists both served as new career highs. The 5-11, 190-pound Hickey was one of two Monarchs to skate in all 76 regular season games in 2011-12 and he was named to his first AHL All-Star Team in January. The Monarchs alternate captain (for a second consecutive season) and co-winner of the team’s Community Service award also led all Manchester defensemen in playoff points with four and he tied for the club lead in playoff assists (4) while appearing in four postseason games this past spring. The Kings originally selected Hickey, a native of Calgary, Alberta, who served as a captain on Team Canada’s gold medal-winning 2009 World Junior Championship team, in the first-round (4th overall) in the 2007 NHL Draft.
Legein, 23, recorded 14 goals, 25 points (14-11=25) and 44 penalty minutes in 63 regular season games with the Monarchs this past season. Five of his goals were scored short-handed, which tied for the league lead and were the most ever scored in one season by a Monarchs player. The 2011-12 season was Legein’s first in the Kings system after L.A. acquired the 5-10, 185-pound native of Oakville, Ontario, and a sixth-round selection in the 2012 NHL Draft (Tomas Hyka) from Philadelphia for future considerations on October 12, 2011. Legein’s 14 goals ranked fifth on the Monarchs and his 25 points tied for ninth on the team. In four postseason games with the Monarchs, he collected two goals, two points (2-0=2) and 15 penalty minutes. Legein, a member of the gold medal-winning Canadian team at the 2008 World Junior Championships, was originally selected by Columbus in the second-round (37th overall) in the 2007 NHL Draft.
Meckler, 25 (turned 25 on July 9), recorded 10 goals, 17 points (10-7=17), 13 penalty minutes and a plus-10 rating in 44 regular season games with the Monarchs this past season, his fifth season in Manchester. His plus-10 rating ranked third on the team and two of his 10 goals were scored short-handed. Meckler, a 6-0, 213-pound native of Highland Park, Illinois, attempted at least one shot in 41 of the 44 games he appeared in during the 2012 season. Meckler, originally selected by the Kings in the fifth-round (134th overall) in the 2006 NHL Draft, also went scoreless while appearing in all four Monarchs playoff games this past spring. On the Monarchs all-time regular season lists, he ranks first in career games played (342), first in career shots on goal (812), and tied for second in career goals scored (74).
Muzzin, 23, established new career highs in goals (7), assists (24), points (31), penalty minutes (40) and games played (71) while skating with the Monarchs this past season. Amongst fellow defensemen on the Monarchs roster in 2011-12, the 6-3, 217-pound Muzzin ranked second in goals, assists and points, tied for first with four power-play goals, and led all blue-liners with 156 shots on goal. The native of Woodstock, Ontario, also finished with six multi-point games during the regular season and with one assist and two penalty minutes in three postseason games with the Monarchs this past spring. Muzzin, originally selected by Pittsburgh in the fifth-round (141st overall) in the 2007 NHL Draft and signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on January 4, 2010, also has appeared in 11 career NHL games – all with the Kings. He made his NHL debut at Vancouver on October 9, 2010, and he recorded his first NHL point with an assist vs. Vancouver on October 15, 2010.