The good: Averaging 83 hard seconds of ice time more than the season prior, Regehr appeared in 67 games and while healthy provided a Kings blue line a stabilizing veteran figure during a period of injury and suspension. Despite posting a -9.6% ZSO-rel (he was the most inclined King to begin shifts in the defensive zone), only 1.82 goals per 60 minutes were scored against the Kings while he was on the ice in five-on-five situations. That’s more impressive than, say, Brayden McNabb’s defense-leading 1.53 GA/60, given McNabb’s +7.9 ZSO-rel. His scoring pace rose slightly, if that’s worth anything. The club’s five-on-five scoring output while Regehr was paired with Drew Doughty (442:26 / 2.71 GF60 / 1.63 GA60) was quite good, and certainly passable when he skated with Alec Martinez (372:28 / 2.09 GF60 / 1.61 GA60), his second most frequent defensive partner. More than any number indicates, he was a reassuring presence in the dressing room of a team that dealt with adversity and subtraction, and as in his previous seasons with the club, served as an extension of the coaching staff and able communicator in an accomplished room.
“He’s obviously been around for a while, and I think he’s good at recognizing when things need to be a little bit more serious, when we need a kick in the rear, and then he’s really cognizant of when it’s OK to play a practical joke or just crack a regular joke to get the guys laughing, get the guys in a good mood,” Alec Martinez said of Regehr in December. “He’s been around for a long time. He can recognize those situations. That kind of guy, they’re a very, very valuable asset in the room. You need people like that.”
The bad: Let’s get it out of the way: Regehr’s possession metrics are poor. They’ve been poor since he was a King, and for several seasons before that. And if you’re relying too heavily on what the percentages say, and not enough on the secondary attributes and intangibles he provides, you’re not going to produce the most accurate read on the impact he’s had. Dean Lombardi said, “you’ll never convince me that emotion isn’t a huge part of this game” in September, and Regehr was a lively conduit for the emotional resonance of a team that won six playoff series in his first two years before failing to reach its established mark this past year. And speaking of 2014-15, it predictably saw Regehr produce sub-par possession numbers, for what that’s worth. And that’s not much, because Regehr’s role wasn’t to be a player whose job it was to drive play – the Kings have several other defensemen quite adept at that – and L.A. still ended up as the league’s top possession team, anyway. But, back to the thesis here: Regehr isn’t strong possession-wise. Granted, these were in difficult minutes – really, the most difficult minutes out of anyone who played in more than a small handful of games. But Regehr maintained a -5.8% Corsi-rel, and all teammates other than Jordan Nolan posted better possession rates away from him than with him. For a stay-at-home defenseman, the numbers depicting shot suppression don’t tell a rosy tale (and, again, his difficult zone starts should be recognized), but he finished last amongst club defensemen with 53.6 shots against per 60 shorthanded minutes and 29.8 shots against per 60 minutes during five-on-five play. These numbers don’t deviate much from those established a season prior.
Going forward: Regehr has indicated he will retire, and on Tuesday night (8:30 p.m. / FOX Sports West) you’ll be able to hear him articulate his decision in a Kings Live Coffee with Bob segment. For 1,089 regular season games he willingly sacrificed his body while amassing 36 goals, 163 assists, 199 points and innumerable dings, scrapes, bruises, pokes and the occasional broken nose. A 2014 Stanley Cup winner, Regehr registered three goals and 18 points in 67 career playoff games, 26 of which were spent with Los Angeles.
“I think Robyn has always had an ability to have a really good handle on the room,” Darryl Sutter said in December. “Either in pressure or light or heavy, whatever it is, he’s always had a good handle on it, and as he’s gotten older and farther into his career, guys like that who’ve been there and done it all are basically an extension of the coaching staff, and they’re really a part of the glue and the fabric of the team. … I mean, so much in today’s game is measured by the fan and the media of what they see on the ice, but so much of it is in the locker room on good teams.”
Player evaluations: #2 MATT GREENE | #3 BRAYDEN MCNABB | #5 JAMIE MCBAIN | #6 JAKE MUZZIN | #7 ANDREJ SEKERA | #8 DREW DOUGHTY | #10 MIKE RICHARDS | #11 ANZE KOPITAR | #12 MARIAN GABORIK | #13 KYLE CLIFFORD | #14 JUSTIN WILLIAMS | #15 ANDY ANDREOFF | #22 TREVOR LEWIS | #23 DUSTIN BROWN | #27 ALEC MARTINEZ | #28 JARRET STOLL | #31 MARTIN JONES | #32 JONATHAN QUICK | #37 NICK SHORE