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How does this team improve year over year after their 2022-23 exit? Seems to me that they swung on a trade to get rid of Jonathan Quick for Korpisalo and Gavirkov - both free agents and missed. Almost a classic case of "Get to the playoffs and anything can happen" advice - wonder where that came from? lol. Taking a close look as follows;

1) Roster for 2023-24 per current cap friendly has 15 forwards, 7D, 2 goalies and cap space of 2.55M but for all intensive purposes that's 24 roster players so I'll deduct the following forwards with virtually league minimums, and did not play in the Edm playoff series, and are not likely roster players next year - Andre Lee $867,500, Alex Laferriere - $875K, Francesco Pinelli - $867,500 Samuel Helenius - $828K. - Adjusts the forwards to 11 forwards. I will also add back RHD Jordan Spence - $820K, and Jacob Moverare - 762.5K - neither of who played any major # of games for LA, were really just playoff reserves and also don;t make next years' roster. Now adjusts their cap space to $7.57M with a roster of 11 forwards, 5 D, 2 Goalies - leaving room for 5 more players (I have Byfield and Kaliyev making the team)

2) Looking at their RFA's - Gabriel Vilard 23g, 18A will certainly command a raise. For conservatism, I would expect he will get minimum $3.5M That leaves a remaining cap of $4M to cover 4 more players and every other RFA they have, will be fortunate to sign for $1M. They need 1 forward, and 2 D

LA do not have a major 1 year contract for someone underperforming (like a Hoffman etc.). Kings need a little more scoring punch or drive up front, or stronger LHD presence. Last year of Kopitar's $10M contract. The Kings covet Josh Anderson. Unfortunately at his $5.5M cap hit, they can't afford him. We have talked before about LA Kings having strength on the RHD side of defense with Doughty, Matt Roy, and also Sean Walker (5-11, 185) and Sean Durzi (6-0, 195) - both RHD playing the left side. The Kings could use a stronger LHD presence such as Joel Edmundson (6-5, 220), but at $3.5M they would be cap challenged. Is 50% cap retained of Edmundson plus our 2nd round pick for 8th overall 2021 RHD prospect Brandt Clarke too rich?  

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One player I overlooked on the Kings is former #7 overall 2017 draft Lias Andersson (traded by the rangers to the Kings). He put up 31g, 28a with their AHL farm club Ontario Reign this year on a minimum NHL contract of $750k. The Kings are out of waiver options on him as an RFA so he is either signed, or traded. He will be 25 in October. A center at 6-1, 185 and maybe a late bloomer, might be worth an inquiry / chance for a trade or a minimal offer sheet to jam the kings. A $2M deal is a third round pick. and might be a better risk than Gurianov.

Lias Andersson basically quit the Rangers organization with rumoured stories of bullying and depression/mental health. Perhaps he has now found a niche vs. becoming Doruin part deux. The talent appears to be coming out. His draft reports indicated some skating talent. May be worth the risk / reward.

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