I just received word from the Kings’ front office that a trade for Buffalo Sabres defenseman Brayden McNabb is “close,” and now Bob McKenzie just dropped this piece of information:

McNabb, 23, carries a $715,000 cap hit and will be a restricted free agent after this season. A third round pick of the Sabres in 2009, the 6-foot-4, 208 pound left shooting defenseman is a three-time AHL All-Star with a heavy shot and a good dose of grit and physicality. He has 29 points (7-22-29) and a plus-9 rating in 38 games with AHL-Rochester, where he has spent the majority of his season.

From the Rochester Americans’ website:

In 28 games played with Rochester, McNabb has totaled 22 points highlighted by a four-assist night on Nov. 1 against the Syracuse Crunch. During a season that has included an outdoor game, a trip to Switzerland to compete in the Spengler Cup and numerous call-ups to Buffalo, McNabb admits it’s been a wild season so far.

“It’s kind of been all over,” McNabb said. “At one point I felt like I was traveling around the world there for a bit, from going to the Spengler Cup to getting called up while we were in Switzerland. It’s been good, some ups and downs, and I’m just trying to work on my game and develop into an NHL player and hopefully be in Buffalo long-term someday.”

Part of the appeal in another All-Star appearance for McNabb will be a chance to defend his title in the hardest shot competition. McNabb hammered a 101.8 MPH slap-shot to take the crown in last year’s AHL All-Star Skills competition.

“I might have to have a few cheeseburgers to put a little more weight behind it,” McNabb said.

In 37 career games with Buffalo, McNabb has one goal, eight points and an even rating. He was impressive in junior hockey, using his physicality and a booming shot in leading Kootenay to a WHL Championship and Memorial Cup berth in 2011.

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