Read the Kings statement on Slava Voynov’s no-contest plea

Here’s what the Kings said in a news release about defenseman Slava Voynov’s no-contest plea Thursday on misdemeanor domestic violence that will result in 90 days in jail plus three years probation:

“We believe the legal system has effectively resolved this matter and the punishment is fair and just. Any act of domestic violence is unacceptable. As an organization, the prevention of domestic violence and the education of our players and employees is of paramount importance. We will continue to actively develop and implement a strategy to deliver this message. We remain steadfast in our support of the National Hockey League as they now begin their own investigative process. Until that is complete we will withhold further comment.”

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L.A. Kings’ Slava Voynov pleads no contest to misdemeanor, will serve 90 days in jail

Kings defenseman Slava Voynov entered a plea of no contest to a misdemeanor count of corporal injury to a spouse Thursday in Los Angeles County Superior Court in Torrance and will serve 90 days in jail plus three years probation. He waived his right to a trial in accepting the deal with the District Attorney.

Voynov’s trial on felony domestic violence was to begin next week.

District Attorney Frank Dunnick told the court that a conviction means Voynov would be deported from the United States. Voynov’s defense team objected and Judge Taylor says that it’s a matter for immigration to determine.

In addition, Voynov must complete a 52-week domestic violence course, perform eight hours of community service and pay fines totally roughly $700.

Check back for updates.

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Justin Williams on leaving the Kings for the Caps: This was the best fit for me

Justin Williams signed a two-season, $6.5-million contract with the Washington Capitals on Wednesday, leaving the Kings behind after helping them to two Stanley Cup championships and earning one of the great nicknames in NHL history. Here’s some of what he had to say during a conference call Thursday:

“Obviously, we enjoyed it (playing with the Kings). Except for my first year when I got traded in the middle of it we made the playoffs every time except for last year. We enjoyed a pretty good stretch. Two Stanley Cups and a trip to the Western Conference finals.

“Things got derailed this year with appearances and things beyond individuals’ control. There are going to be changes in L.A. because of that. Everyone’s looking to get better. I spent … the best seasons I had were in Los Angeles year in and year out. The team and individual success was great there. I made a lot of friends.

“It’s a business. It’s about winning, but now it’s time for me to move on. I spoke to L.A. yesterday. There’s this thing now called the salary cap. I’m going to move on, but I’m going to remember my time there. … I don’t think that’s fair (to talk about other offers). There were offers out there I pondered. … This is the best fit for me. Listen, I’m going to play as long as I can. My head is upset we didn’t make the playoffs, but my body is saying, ‘Thank you.’”

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Justin Williams, the Kings’ Mr. Game 7, signs a two-year, $6.5-million deal with Capitals

Unrestricted free agent Justin Williams signed a two-season, $6.5-million contract Wednesday and jumped to the Washington Capitals from the Kings. The departure of the man known as Mr. Game 7 because of his heroics during the Kings’ march to the Stanley Cup in 2014 was not unexpected. The Kings did create some salary-cap flexibility by terminating the contract of Mike Richards on Monday, but in the end Richards decided to move elsewhere late on the first day of free agency.

Williams, 33, scored 41 points in 81 games last season with the Kings.

The Capitals are 3-6 in Game 7s since 2008.

The Kings were 3-0 in Game 7s in 2014, all on the road.

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Kings sign backup goaltender Jhonas Enroth to one-year, $1.25-million deal

The Kings needed a backup goaltender after trading Martin Jones to the Boston Bruins in the deal that brought Milan Lucic to Los Angeles. So, the Kings signed Jhonas Enroth to a one-season, $1.25-million contract Wednesday. Enroth played 50 games last season, including 37 with the Buffalo Sabres. He also played for the Dallas Stars. Overall, he was 18-26-2 in 2014-15. He’s not likely to play anywhere near that much as Jonathan Quick’s backup with the Kings next season.

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Defenseman Andrej Sekera signs a really big deal with Edmonton Oilers

Andrej Sekera, a defenseman the Kings acquired at the trade deadline from the Carolina Hurricanes for a first-round draft pick next year and a prospect, signed a six-season, $33-million contract with the Edmonton Oilers on the first day of free agency. Sekera’s tenure with the Kings lasted all of 16 games, and he scored one goal and four points. He suffered a season-ending knee injury in a March 30 game against the Chicago Blackhawks.

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Report: Incident at Canadian border led to Kings’ decision to terminate Richards’ contract

ESPN.com reported Tuesday that Mike Richard’s contract was terminated Monday by the Kings because of an off-ice incident earlier in June, possibly at the Canadian border. The website said the Royal Canadian Mounted Police were investigating, but no charges were filed. The RCMP had no further comment.

Here’s a link to the story: http://espn.go.com/los-angeles/nhl/story/_/id/13173411/royal-canadian-mounted-police-investigation-involves-mike-richards-source

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Kings VP/hockey operations Mike Futa provides Mike Richards background on radio show

Michael Futa, the Kings’ vice president of hockey operations and their director of player personnel, offered some background on Mike Richards during an interview before the team terminated the forward’s contract Monday. Here’s some of what Futa said of Richards on a Toronto radio station earlier in the day:

“That’s a tough one. Obviously, what makes (Kings general manager) Dean Lombardi special is relationships with the players and his loyalty. Obviously, coming off the Cup year (in 2014) and having a very small window there, as Dean said it was probably the most difficult incorrect decision he’s made and it’s cost us.”

Futa referred to deciding against buying out Richards last summer.

Futa then continued, “(Lombardi) flew into Kenora (Richards’ offseason home in Ontario) and looked Mike in the eye and felt he was comfortable that we were going to have him buy in a little bit better and things just didn’t work out (last season). Everything you said about Mike Richards in his career, sure, he’s been well-decorated for his incredible past. You know what? He’s the one who’s got to look into the mirror with regard to his decision.

“We clearly … (he was a) huge part of our Stanley Cup championships and we wish him well.”

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L.A. Kings terminate Mike Richards contract for breach of contract, give no further details

The Kings terminated the contract of forward Mike Richards on Monday morning, saying in a rather terse statement posted on the club’s website: “The Los Angeles Kings today have exercised the team’s right to terminate the contract of Mike Richards for material breach of the requirements of his Standard Player’s Contract. We are not prepared to provide any more detail or to discuss the underlying grounds for the contract termination at this time.”

That could cover a good deal of ground, but it means the Kings did not buy out Richards of his contract as previously speculated would happen. This isn’t likely to be sorted out until the lawyers have their say and that could take a while.

It’s a stunning move, to say the least.

Here’s what the AP reported Sunday about Richards:

“The Kings placed Richards on unconditional waivers for the purpose of buying out the remaining five years of his contract, a person familiar with the decision told The Associated Press on Sunday. The source added that Ducks defenseman Mark Fistric and Montreal forward P.A. Parenteau have also been placed on unconditional waivers.

“The players will spend 24 hours on waivers. If unclaimed, they will have their contracts bought out and become unrestricted free agents.

“Richards is the most high-profile and priciest of the players hitting the market.

“He is in the midst of a $69 million, 12-year contract which runs out in 2020. By buying out Richards, the Kings partially alleviate the $5.75 million annual salary-cap hit, though part of his salary will still count against the team’s payroll through 2024-25.

“The move does not come as a surprise, even for someone who played a key role in helping the Kings win the Stanley Cup in 2012 and 2014.

“Richards’ declining production led to the Kings demoting the 10-year NHL veteran to Manchester, their American Hockey League affiliate, in January.

“The four-time 20-goal scorer finished last season with a career-low five goals and 16 points in 53 NHL games.”

 

 

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L.A. Kings general manager Dean Lombardi talks about re-signing Tyler Toffoli, and what’s next

Here’s more from Kings general manager Dean Lombardi, who talked at some length Friday afternoon about giving forward Tyler Toffoli a two-season, $6.5-million contract extension and how it enabled him to also trade for physical forward Milan Lucic, and what’s next on his summer to-do list:

“I have to say our first priority, in terms of signing now, is (signing Anze) Kopitar (to an extension). The other thing I’d say, that shows this team cares about winning, is what Tyler Toffoli did. It shows how everything ties together. With the threat of offer sheets and everything out there, the way he handled the situation was exemplary.

“This is a top young player. He could wait for an offer sheet (from another team). He could demand millions in a long-term deal. We talked to him, and it’s certainly a fair deal but it’s still a good deal for him, but in no way did he hold anybody hostage. If Tyler Toffoli doesn’t step up and do this, we can’t do this (Lucic) deal.

“Then we would have exposed ourselves to an offer sheet. It’s just exemplary for a young player, to realize his time will come and take a good deal, but not try to shoot for the moon. So the team is allowed to go out and make itself better. Once this (trade) got rolling, it was not doable without Tyler signing. If we had done this without Tyler signing, we were exposed to an offer sheet. It’s a great example of guys caring about the right things. They’ll get their money when the time comes.”

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