Sens fans bid farewell to Dion Phaneuf on Twitter

Sens fans bid farewell to Dion Phaneuf on Twitter

Sens fans bid farewell to Dion Phaneuf on Twitter

It is an age-old cliche. He and forward Nate Thompson on Tuesday night were acquired by the Kings from the Ottawa Senators in a trade that sent forwards Nick Shore and Marian Gaborik to Ottawa. The veteran defenseman isn't going to light up the stat sheet - three goals and 16 points in 52 games - but he has dished out 107 hits and blocked 112 shots this season while logging considerable power-play minutes. The 33-year old Thompson is signed through 2018-19 and slated to earn $1.65m next season. He earns $4.875 million per year through 2020-21.

That had to be the key to the deal, after Ottawa owner Eugene Melnyk hinted during his December rant that the Senators needed to shave salary. "Like, literally underwrite. Write a cheque". What we went through previous year, as far as we went, I'll never forget that as a player.

Some Ottawa fans thought Phaneuf was a bit prickly when he was with Toronto, but their opinion of him changed.

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Gaborik becomes the 10th player from the Kings 2014 Stanley Cup team to depart. Ottawa was equally as accommodating for Phaneuf as it was in moving Mike Fisher to be near his country star wife Carrie Underwood's homebase.

Phaneuf indicated that the move to California would be beneficial for him and his wife, actress Elisha Cuthbert.

The Senators at the time were playing in Pittsburgh, where the Kings will play Thursday, meaning Phaneuf and Thompson did not have to travel to join the team. I'm not sure when the last time you could say that was. I am honored to be going there, I am excited about the team they have, where they are in the standings. For the remainder of the season, coach Guy Boucher can look to Gaborik to add a veteran presence to a roster in flux, while offering tips of how he rose to become a 400-plus goal scorer. Ottawa has been in sell-off mode for weeks, with GM Pierre Dorion working the phones to reshape a team in the Eastern Conference basement just a few months after a Game 7 loss in the Conference final. Two guys I have been far in the playoffs with. He may get another crack now. Two players that I really respect. "I've got fond memories of playing in Ottawa", Phaneuf said. You develop relationships with players. Right now it's a lot [to take in]. Outside of Drew Doughty, Jake Muzzin and Alec Martinez, the Kings did not have great depth on defense.

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Phaneuf's departure will likely mean more opportunity and ice time for highly touted rookie Thomas Chabot, among others.

It remains to be seen if the Kings will make more moves before the National Hockey League trade deadline ends, but with such a tight playoff race in the Pacific Division, the LA Kings could not afford to stand pat on upgrading their defense. There is more money to move out. Phaneuf-for-Gaborik was strictly the major impact part of the deal. Both Thompson and Phaneuf had bad contracts and no movement clauses.

Stay tuned for many more Senators trades. That is as big a win as any on the trade front. That is exactly what happened Tuesday night. "He's a good friend of mine and good friend of everybody on this team".

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