Drew Doughty was set to become an unrestricted free agent after the 2018-19 season, but the Los Angeles Kings won’t let him get that far. He has signed an eight-year extension to remain in Los Angeles. The deal, worth 88M or $11M AAV, makes him one of the highest paid players on the Kings.
Doughty had one year remaining on his current contract. He has a $7 million salary cap hit before the extension kicks in.
Drew Doughty will ink new deal to remain with the LA Kings through the 2027 season!https://t.co/ExFOstg4DX
— LA Kings (@LAKings) June 29, 2018
Drew Doughty To Stay With Kings For The Near Future
The 28-year-old defenseman has spoken about his desire to remain a King for the rest of his career.
“It’s not that they had to show me or prove to me anything for me to sign here. I always wanted to be an LA King and I want to stay an LA King,” Doughty said during the team’s exit interviews at Toyota Sports Center.
General manager Rob Blake has also spoken about how signing Doughty to an extension was the team’s number one priority. His teammates were also on board when asked during the team’s exit interviews
“He drives the play for our team, and we want Drew to be around here for his whole career,” Kings assistant captain Jeff Carter said. “Hopefully, that happens.”
“I have already,” Kings captain Anze Kopitar said with a smile when asked about when he’ll start recruiting efforts to keep Doughty in Los Angeles. “And I can be pretty persuasive.”
For Doughty, he set a career high this season with 60 points, in the form of 10 goals and 50 assists. He led the league in time on ice, averaging 26:50 per game. Appearing in all 82 games for the Kings, Doughty currently holds the longest consecutive games played streak on the team. His 328 games are two shy of the record set by Kopitar.
Spending his entire career with the Kings since being drafted second overall in 2008, Doughty has been a part of two Stanley Cup Championships with the team. He has spent numerous occasions as a part of two Gold Medal-winning Canadian Olympic teams in 2010 and 2014. He also helped take home gold for the Canadian World Cup team in 2016.
Doughty took home his first Norris Trophy in 2016 but finished as a runner-up to Victor Hedman this past season.
During his 10-year career with the Kings, Doughty has registered 102 goals and 320 assists in 770 career regular season games. He’s added 16 goals and 35 assists in 84 playoff games.
What This Means For The Kings
For the Kings, they have their number one defenseman locked up for the foreseeable future. Doughty will turn 37-years-old when he enters the last year of his contract. For a team that has struggled to regain what they did in 2012 and 2014, keeping Doughty in the organization is a step in the right direction.
Doughty has been a large part of the success the Kings have had over the years. Signing this extension proves to him that the team continues to value him like the franchise player he has become.
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