Quick goalie headed to the Hall of Fame?

Los Angeles Kings veteran goalie and future Hall of Fame candidate, Jonathan Quick, is reportedly drawing interest as the April 12 trade deadline approaches, and it is feeling like his days might be numbered in a Kings uniform.

Due to the trade deadline, the Seattle expansion draft, or possibly an offseason transaction, he is not likely to finish out the remainder of his contract with the Kings.

Fans want to cling to all of Quick's past accolades, but this is a business and the Kings decision-makers need to keep their eye on the future target. Even though he's a two-time Stanley Cup winner with the Kings (2012, 2014), a NHL All-Star, a Vezina Trophy finalist, and Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff MVP, all good things must eventually come to an end.

And as the race for the playoffs heats up during the 2021 Covid-shortened season, solid goaltending is imperative.

Quick, now 35-years-old, signed a ten-year, $58M contract extension in July 2012, about a month after carrying the team on his back en route to the Kings' first Stanley Cup championship. He still has two years left on his contract at a $5.8M cap hit per season, so if a deal is struck with another organization, expect the Kings to retain about half of his salary for the next two seasons. Since Dion Phaneuf ($4.1M) and Ilya Kovalchuk's ($6.3M) contracts will be coming off the books at the end of the year, this lessens the financial burden.

The big question is what will the Kings get in return for Quick. The Kings don't need another draft pick. They own nine picks in the first six rounds of the upcoming 2021 NHL Draft and had 11 picks last year, so it seems that the Kings arguably have the best prospect pool in the NHL. But, of course, they need to start seeing some of those players become permanent fixtures at the NHL level. It would be helpful if the Kings could gather up a prospect that is ripe for the NHL in a trade for Quick, and preferably a defensemen.

Another concern if Quick is traded before the April 12 deadline is who then becomes the long-term backup goalie. At the moment, this is unclear, but it seems that the immediate successor is likely to be Troy Grosenick, but he becomes a free agent at the end of this season. The Kings might be able to re-sign Grosenick at a reasonable rate, but another team could possibly view him as having more value.

Cal Petersen has proven that he is capable of being the number one goalie for the Kings, but if Grosenick doesn't return next season, the Kings might have to consider hiring a free agent as their backup.

And there is one more key variable to this equation - the Kings are required to leave a goalie exposed for Seattle.

In any event, no matter what transpires with Quick, he will always be remembered as owning the Kings record book for goalies and holds just about every noteworthy franchise mark.


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