Earlier in the week, the Los Angeles Kings sent backup goaltender Martin Jones to the Bruins as a part of the Milan Lucic trade. Suddenly LA found itself with an open seat near the bench and no one to hold Jonathan Quick’s hat.
That problem appears to be solved as the Kings have signed Jhonas Enroth to a one-year contract worth $1.25-million.
It’s a good deal for a guy who isn’t going to be expected to play very much. Last season, Quick played in 72 of 82 games. It’s highly doubtful Darryl Sutter is going to change his game plan and lift the workload on his star netminder.
The Kings are within sneezing distance of the salary cap. Currently Mike Richards and Slava Voynov’s contracts do not count against the cap; however, as LA Kings Insider Jon Rosen puts it, they’re being cautious:
“… even though Slava Voynov’s and Mike Richards’ contracts aren’t currently counting against the Kings’ salary cap, it’s still expected that the team will be operating with restraint in regards to bringing significant contracts aboard.”
Enroth, and his former teammate Michal Neuvirth (who signed a backup deal in Philadelphia today), were at the losing end of the Sabres goal of, well, losing, before being mercifully traded in February. In Buffalo, Enroth was 13-21-2 with .903 save percentage and 3.27 goals against. He was sent to Dallas to act as a No. 2 behind Kari Lehtonen. Enroth went 9-5-5 with .906 SV% and 2.38 GAA.
In those rare occasions where he will take the ice, Enroth will have a much better defense in front of him. That will be helpful in shaking off any bad juju leftover from the years in the Buffalo.