Evaluation: Dean Lombardi - LA Kings Insider

DEAN LOMBARDI Lombardi mug
This season: 46-27-9 record (2-4 in playoffs).
The good: In the fourth season of his slow-build, build-with-youth plan, the Kings took a major step forward and made the playoffs for the first time in eight years. Drew Doughty and Wayne Simmonds, two young players drafted by Lombardi, had a major impact on the team. Free-agent signing Rob Scuderi stabilized the defense, Michal Handzus provided steady play and on-ice leadership and trade acquisition Ryan Smyth helped Anze Kopitar reach another level. The reserve list is stocked with prospects who seem ready to get a shot at the NHL soon.
The bad: There are bound to be holes in even the most successful organizations, but the Kings’ needs are high-profile ones. The defensive unit appears to be young, deep and in strong shape for years to come, and there are a handful of promising goalies, but what about the top-level offensive talent? Ryan Smyth is 34, Justin Williams has a well-chronicled injury history and there doesn’t appear to be much potential first-line talent in the pipeline. Who will play with Anze Kopitar on the first line in two or three years?
Going forward: Like Terry Murray, Lombardi has one season remaining on his contract. Given that the Kings are this far into Lombardi’s plan, and that things seem to be heading in the right direction, it seems unlikely that he would be cut loose unless there is a significant backward step. But there is still work to do. It will be fascinating to see how Lombardi handles the goaltending situation and to see what moves he makes in order to bring in some top-level offensive talent.

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

Born: September 13, 1996
Birthplace: Kramfors, SWE
Position: LW
Handedness: Left


Kempe was selected by the Kings in the first round (29th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

Born: December 21, 1993
Birthplace: Eden, NY, USA
Position: C
Handedness: Left


Iafallo was signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on April 18, 2017.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.