You make the call (retroactively)

Who would you rather have, Drew Doughty or Steven Stamkos? Of course, it’s a moot point, since the Kings weren’t in a position to draft Stamkos anyway, but they were THIS close, as you’ll recall. It’s still an interesting question. The Kings now appear to have tremendous depth, in terms of young defensemen, but are lacking in offensive depth. On the other hand, Doughty is arguably having more success (so far) than Stamkos.

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  • wavesinair

    It’s simple:

    Stamkos MIGHT become a great player.
    Doughty WILL become a great player.

  • Mike in LA


    How could anyone argue that Drew isn’t having a superior season to Stamkos at this point?

  • Fuzzerson

    “The Kings now appear to have tremendous depth, in terms of young defensemen, but are lacking in offensive depth”

    Werent we saying the opposite a year ago? Times change I guess.

  • Ersberg

    I think Doughty is, in fact, already a great player. He’s young, but there’s almost a zero chance of him to flop.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t doubt The Doughty. Doughty is awesome already.

  • dave fouser

    defense wins championships…

    it’s a particularly interesting case because the conventional wisdom is that defensive players take longer to develop. doughty being ‘ahead’ at this point (a sticky term, i know) clearly runs against that, and it’s tempting to explain it be reference to intangibles: that doughty is more mature mentally, has better hockey sense that has allowed him to excel in the nhl, or that he has more confidence for whatever reason. really though, they’re both absurdly young, and have a long way to go. it will certainly be an interesting comparison, and probably the subject of MANY message board debates over the next fifteen years.

  • Chris Bond

    To me this is a no brainer. Look at the minutes Dewey is playing. Little Steveie
    all he has done is to get Barry Melrose and his nice hair fired.

  • TB

    You know me…devils advocate…with our scoring issues, maybe we could have used him. I wonder if Stamkos could have had a better season without all the pressure that was put on him by the Lightning organization. But in the end, I like Doughty more. I’ll say Doughty all the way.

  • Moondoggie

    Chris Bond….*LOL* That was going to happen by itself…

    Rich, dude, c’mon…You’re going to have to come up with better polls than this one. Yep, it’s a no-brainer. Both picks have really surprised me but in opposite directions. I don’t think there was ever any doubt about Drew’s ability, it’s just surprising how quickly it has come. This kid quite honestly is one of the best blueliners in the league right now and…as a 19 year old??? It’s like the second coming of Sidney Crosby on defense.

    Stamkos has been, well, an enigma. Maybe it’s his teammates but he seems to really be laboring out there. A few more pounds certainly wouldn’t hurt him. I don’t think a year in the AHL would do him any harm either.

    Bottom line (although I think DL planned on taking Doughty all along), I’m sure glad we ended up with the 2nd pick instead of the first….

  • Ersberg

    Sidney Doughty? Drew Crosby? Not bad at all. I’m glad he plays on this side of the Sierra Nevadas though.

  • Big A

    Why the need to be so diplomatic, Rich? Clearly it’s a no brainer at this point in time.

  • Rachel

    Doughty. Hands down. I mean really is that even a question?
    The kid is amazing. AH-MAZING.

  • anthony

    I have to admit, I made a mistake for wanting Stamkos more.
    We truly got the better player.
    But it had nothing to do with DL.
    He simply had no other choice but to take Doughty #2.
    He was the best player remaining.
    I never was big on Bogosian.

  • Paul from Oxnard

    I can’t get the poll to work. My vote is for Doughty, just like it was before the draft. I don’t care what the scouts said, Doughty will have the better career and is the better player. Plus he was exactly what the Kings needed at the time.

  • Irish Pat

    I would wager that if the Lightning could do the draft over again they would have selected Doughty.

    Also, I remember there being a debate about whether the Kings should select Doughty or Bogosian. Bogosian has been injured and like Stamkos may turn into an All-Star caliber player, but I’m happy that Lombardi and his scouts chose Doughty. Happy being an understatement.

  • Marc Nathan

    if the Kings had gotten the number one pick, and not picked Stamkos, there would have been a move to have Lombardi certified criminally insane. I had my heart set on Stamkos from the drop of the puck on opening night last season.

    Having seen Doughty play 40 games or so, I am thrilled the Kings made the right choice at number two (unlike the year before when the braintrust chose Thomas Hickey at number four, which is still insane on every level.)

    All this being said, I stick by my guns and say “Stamkos.” Doughty is incredibly gifted, but in time the effect of a player like Stamkos will be seen and known, and it’s far more likely he becomes the elite forward he was projected to be than a bust. You can’t make Crosby comparisons yet, but remembering first year players like Joe Thornton or Phil Kessel, you had people ready to ride them out of town on a rail. A few years of growth and development and all is forgotten.

    I’ll take the impact forward over the impact defenseman any day, but in this instance, it did seem to work out in the Kings favor… for now.

  • Jimmy Crack Corn

    It’s way too early to say what kind of player Stamkos will end up being but don’t write him off just yet. Even Vincent Lecavalier took a few years to come into his own, It’s night and day compared to his 1st few years as a #1 draft pick. IMO, high end, NHL defensmen are harder to come by than NHL sniper’s so LA by far got the better deal with Doughty.

    # 1 overall pick vs # 2 overall pick tonight.
    Anyone predict a showdown? Will Stamkos have incentive to step up and prove himself? Will Doughty’s game shine (once again)? Could be interesting.

  • sense13

    This one’s a slam dunk.

    Wasn’t Stamkos a healthy scratch in his last game? And didn’t the strugglin TB beat the dux without Stamkos in the lineup?

    Doughty’s got hockey smarts to go with his high level skills. If Doughty stays healthy, this kid’s a sure HOF IMO.

  • wavesinair

    marc, you’re ‘thrilled’ the kings made the ‘right choice’ in picking doughty but if you could do it again, you’d pick stamkos? am i understanding you correctly?

    the only way picking doughty will NOT work out in the kings favor is if he gets hurt, which can happen to any player.

    in other words, we now HAVE a future great defenseman (barring injury) and that piece of the puzzle is filled. you also have to consider the TYPE of person he is too. doughty’s impact on how this team forms it’s identity will go far beyond just his brilliant play on the ice for years to come. stamkos… who knows? i wouldn’t give that up for anything.


    Way too early to tell at this point.
    Plus, I’ve seen hundreds of Doughty minutes, and only some Stamkos highlights.
    Tampa Bay looks a mess anyway.
    Hard to believe they won a Cup (parity) just a few years ago.
    I’d be much more interested if Tukonen were playing.
    That way I’d know if he were really so worthless…
    I just hope our PP rolls with the same lines as in 5on5 play, tonight.

    C’mon, You Kings.

  • Anonymous

    Defense wins championships. There are very few drafts that have defenseman like Drew Doughty available. We can always pick up a sniper any draft, and ’09 draft is full of them and we should have a good opportunity at one i.e. Kane, Duchene. I pick Doughty, no doubt.

  • anthony

    Any news on the line combinations tonight.
    Should we be expecting to see Fro-Kopi-Ivanans against the Bolts.

  • Anonymous

    I would like to meet anybody that truely said they would have Stamkos over Doughty…. Doughty is the reason i live..

  • simonsez

    The “Vote” button isn’t working for me.. anyone else have this problem?

  • Marty

    Darn Rich, can you do something with that fraud Eklnund?

    Now having Spezza coming to Kings for Kopitar.

  • Ersberg

    It’s not working for me either, Simon.

  • Mike near Pasadena


    Where’s the “Trade down to get Filatov” option?

  • Tim

    Doughty no question!

  • stats1

    Doughty for sure! Also, I could not get the vote button to work either.

  • tony

    now of course you all pick doughty, for obvious reasons. but you’re all liars if you said you picked him from the beginning. i was around last year when everyone here was PRAYING for stamkos. both will become elite players for a long time. just providing some perspective.

    go kings

  • Moondoggie

    Sorry Rich….My vote button isn’t working either….But, it looks like Doughty by a landslide, far bigger than Obama’s…

  • Quisp

    This question is causing me to consider the bizarro alternate reality in which Tampa, with Doughty, is playing excellent hockey under Melrose, who didn’t get fired, and the Kings are in the cellar with an under-achieving Stamkos.

  • wavesinair

    @ quisp

    The horror!

  • Kevin Y

    We all wanted Stamkos, and that #1 overall pick. If we had won the lottery, DL probably would’ve taken Stamkos. But, since he got the #2, it was an easy decision for him, and I don’t regret it.

    Defense wins championships. It’s nice to have another offensive player, but consider this: for most teams, there are 12 forwards on the ice in any game (only 9 in the third period of Kings games, apparently). There are only 6 defensemen on the ice in any game. So, there are 3x as many forwards as defenders. So what I think is this: when you have the chance to take a great young defenseman, one being compared to the great Bobby Orr, I take him. He is more valuable because he is expected to do more. He’s on the ice more.

    As for the Kings, they have incredible depth, especially on defense. A list of NHL players includes Doughty, Greene, and Johnson. Those are three defenseman that I think you can build a team around with the prospects the Kings have. They also have Hickey, Teubert, and Voynov that can be NHL ready within three seasons. They have the guys they need to where they could use them as bargaining chips to acquire an impact offensive player from a team with defensive struggles.

  • NMKingsFan

    Anthony, DL didn’t have a simple decision at the #2 spot in the draft, International Scouting and many scouts had Bogosian rated ahead of Doughty, I think Lombardi made the right choice.
    This is not a spot for your endless DL bashing.

  • nykingfan

    A compelte no-brainer for Doughty. Ray Bourque-like defensemen come around how often?????
    Stamkos will probably be a top offensive player in the future but there’s nothing more valuable than a top defensemen.
    Just look at the trade rumors…how many top 2 or 4 defensemen are in the mix to be moved? how many top 6 forwards are in the mix to be moved?
    It’s easier to find a great offensive player either thru trade or free agency than it is to find a defenseman.

  • KingsFan19

    To me, this is a no-brainer. Drew Doughty is one of those rare players that make make an immediate impact. Doughty has already demonstrated that he is the real deal, Stamkos? not so much.

    As others have stated it is much more difficult to find D-men of his caliber than it is to find a Top 6 forward of Stamkos’s potential. Defense wins championships and the Kings are finally (after 40+ years) addressing that need and preparing for the future.

  • taz42

    DL said right from the start that it was D he was going after and yet, people continued to think he’d go after Stamkos.
    DL knew exactly what he was doing
    As for Stamkos being a healthy scratch, Tocchet has made the statement that Stamkos needs to build his body up and will be working on that, thus missing a game now and then.

  • Anonymous

    The general concensus around many boards is that we’d have still taken Doughty. DL would have traded the pick to Tampa for a player/and or a high pick to move down a spot.

  • wavesinair

    “When I was growing up, I had a Kings pillow case and a Kings phone in my room. It was kind of cool because I had all that stuff and now I’m here.”

    –Drew Doughty

  • What’s the frequency, Kenneth?

    @ Fuzzerson

    Yeah, the balance has indeed changed. You put two offensive-minded defenseman on the block, one mutinies and one shows up injured early in the season, and it’s going to change the balance. Throw Cammi on the block (the right move) and it’s even more lopsided. If you ask me, the ones that really hurt were Stuart and Lubo–one had to stay.

    That said, a lot of talent has arisen through the ranks, firming up the defense for a long time. Now they need at least one pair of good hands to clog up the crease.

  • BakoCAcondorsKingsFan

    Notes about the Bobby Holik interview…

    If I were on the team I’d be steamed. Holik dismisses the Kings offhandedly, like a JV team, as he was calling out his own team for slacking off against the Ducks. Too bad we don’t play New Jersey again this year! It’s time to earn back some respect, and I hope the Kings got the message. The fact that there is some truth in his comments make them hurt even more. It DOESN’T take a great effort to beat the Kings, for an experienced club like the Devils. It should.

    Perhaps someday this Baby-Steps team can grow up with a little edge of nastiness to its play. Otherwise, they just remain another patsy of a team to play.

  • JonG

    Before the draft there was plenty of debate on this blog about who to choose, and Drew Doughty was by no means the overwhelming favorite. As I recall, most of the guys who wanted Doughty based their decision on his choice of bedroom furniture. Kudos to Dean Lombardi for making an excellent decision when there were plenty of other good choices available.

    The other top picks may end up having better careers than Drew; it’s way too early to tell one way or the other. However based on the first half-season I am extremely happy with our guy. If it weren’t for Steve Mason I think Doughty would definitely be the NHL rookie of the year.

  • dtownmbrown

    During the draft, I would say Stamkos was a no-brainer #1 no matter what team got thatg pick, unless they traded down to #2 or something.

    But of all the D-men I definitely thought Doughty was the best choice of all, and being that the Kings had the pick of the litter, and that Doughty is a lifelong Kings fan, it was just meant to be, and I am extremely grateful that it worked out the way it did.

  • neil

    That ? should be “Who wanted the first pick last year so we could pick Stamkos”

  • Al

    I liked DD when I seen him in camp and he has been handled and brought along much better then JJ was/has. It’s to bad Stamkos didn’t have better mentors, understand, I’m not saying Vinny and St. Louis aren’t any good it’s just from watching the games they have played that he looks totally lost. There have been other number ones who came up and didn’t fair well either, remember Daigle for the Sens?, also Mimoso was the top scorer in Jrs when Vancouver selected him and turned out to be a 3rd line penalty killer/checker. The Kings have done well now that we have someone in the GM spot and great Scouts.

  • Dan H.

    I’ll admit I was one hoping for Stamkos but I was wrong.

    I hope for his sake that he makes it through the tough stretch and becomes a great player but so far Doughty has made the transition better.

    I’d rather have a guy like Doughty on the blue line than a sniper up front. How often do you get a Leetch or Borque or MacInnis that can change your team that much? not often.

    He’s not there yet but I have high hopes.

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