Milan Lucic’s agent told a Vancouver, British Columbia, radio station Monday there have been no talks with the Kings about a contract extension for the veteran left wing and he is preparing for free agency July 1. Lucic can become an unrestricted free agent if the Kings fail to sign him to a new deal before July 1.
“Milan Lucic would love to re-sign with the Kings, but is preparing for July 1,” agent Gerry Johansson told NEWS 1130 in Vancouver on Monday.
Lucic, a Vancouver native, was acquired by the Kings last June 26 in exchange for goaltender Martin Jones, defenseman Colin Miller and the 13th pick in the 2015 draft. Lucic had 20 goals and 55 points in 81 games for the Kings, who bowed out in the first round of the playoffs to Jones and the San Jose Sharks.
The Bruins flipped Jones to the Sharks after acquiring him from the Kings.
Lucic said at season’s end, “I really enjoy being an LA King and everything it has to offer. Hopefully, it can get done here in the near, near future. Just a little bit more work to do to bridge a gap here (and agree on an extension).
“It’s definitely something I want moving forward. I think it’s something they want too. Hopefully, we can make it work out. The sooner the better. To be honest, I don’t have much interest in hitting the open market or even hearing what’s out there because, in my mind, this is where I want to be.
“Why flirt with something when you know what you want? That’s the case for me moving forward.”
The Kings have salary-cap issues and there have been reports recently that the NHL could lower the cap for next season below $70 million, which could further complicate negotiations with Lucic. He made $6.5 million for 2015-16, the final year in a three-season, $18-million deal he signed with Boston in 2013.