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Kings Already Making Off-Season Moves

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The Los Angeles Kings have already begun the off-season activities, relieving assistant coach Trent Yawney of his duties and re-signing goaltender David Rittich to a new deal.

Kings Have Stability in Rittich

The organization will be looking for a new assistant coach, but the head coaching position must still be made official. Yawney will not be back as part of the revamped coaching staff. He joined the Kings organization in 2019 and assumed assistant coaching duties until recently. He would spend most of his time along with former head coach Todd McLellan and recently interned head coach Jim Hiller. Yawney had previously held the same position with the Edmonton Oilers, Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks, and San Jose Sharks. He had his only head coaching position with the Blackhawks in 2005-06.

In another move, Los Angeles re-signed goaltender Rittich to a new 1-year/ $1 million deal. Rittich came up big last season, earning the nickname “Big Save Dave.” He joined the Kings after starting the season with the Ontario Reign of the American Hockey League (AHL). After a terrific start, starter Cam Talbot struggled, and Rittich assumed the starter role and did well. He finished the season with a 13-6-3 record, a 2.15 goals-against-average, a .921 save percentage, and three shutouts.

He will likely assume the backup role next season as the Kings continue to search for a starter capable of playing 50 games. If all else fails, Rittich is ready to take over as the starter.

The Kings, however, may be in the market for a high-profile goaltender to take over between the pipes.

Whether through trade or free agency, look for the Kings to be active in the goaltender market.

There are plenty of goaltenders who may be in the market for new homes after this season is complete, and Los Angeles may have a golden opportunity to grab a solid goaltender capable of leading them in the playoffs.

The transactions are likely just beginning. With a head coach vacancy to officially announce and several free-agent players, General Manager Rob Blake has his work cut out for him.
We are far from seeing the finished product, as moves will continue through the off-season.

PHOTO: NHL[.]com

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