Jake Muzzin most likely would have spent the lockout-shortened NHL season in the minor leagues, but he got a promotion because of injuries to Kings defensemen Matt Greene and Willie Mitchell. Muzzin made the most of his chance and earned a new two-year, $2-million contract. Muzzin and the Kings agreed to a new deal Friday morning, keeping the team’s defense corps nearly intact for next season.
The Kings did lose Rob Scuderi to Pittsburgh in free agency, a significant departure, no doubt about it. But Greene, who had back surgery last season, and Mitchell, who had knee surgery, are expected to be back to form by the opening of training camp Sept. 11. The 24-year-old Muzzin had 16 points (seven goals, nine assists) in 45 games after the Kings recalled him from Manchester (N.H.) of the American Hockey. He was selected as the Kings’ top newcomer for 2012-13, winning the Mark Bavis Memorial Award.