- Scott Burnside, NHL
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The Oilers get the Kings' first-round draft pick in 2011, prospect Colten Teubert and a conditional second- or third-round draft pick in 2012.
"We're set up now where we can focus entirely on getting
better," Kings general manager Dean Lombardi said before Los Angeles hosted the Detroit Red Wings on Monday night.
Being buyers instead of sellers at the deadline is an unusual role for Lombardi and the Kings, who just
ended an eight-year playoff drought last spring. Lombardi started
his tenure in Los Angeles by dumping assets late in most seasons,
but his Kings are in the playoff picture again this year, sitting
in fifth place in the Western Conference standings with 11 wins in
15 games before meeting Detroit.
Penner, a four-time 20-goal scorer, leaves the league-worst
Oilers in a deal for defenseman Teubert, the Kings' first-round
pick in 2008, along with the draft picks.
Penner is expected to arrive in Los Angeles on Tuesday, and he
could suit up for Thursday's home game against Phoenix.
Lombardi is a notoriously cautious GM committed to building from
within the organization and refusing to overpay for free agents. He
was outbid by New Jersey's exorbitant contract for superstar Ilya
Kovalchuk last summer, but Lombardi eagerly rolled the dice on
Penner after chasing the former Anaheim Ducks forward for more than a month.
In Penner, the Kings get a 6-foot-4, 245-pound forward who has 21 goals this season. He had 32 goals and 31 assists last season.
Lombardi envisions using Penner on a line with
leading scorer Anze Kopitar, a similarly physical forward who could
create matchup nightmares for opponents' defenses.
"I think our team deserved this," Lombardi said, citing the
Kings' 6-1-3 performance on a mammoth February road trip that
rescued their season. "The players drove me to this, going on that
road trip and saying ... 'Make us better without taking anybody out
of the room."'
Penner has been the subject of Oilers' fans displeasure since he
signed a five-year, $21.25 million offer sheet that the Ducks
declined to match. The contract angered then-Anaheim general
manager Brian Burke, who blamed Kevin Lowe, Edmonton's president of
hockey operations, for inflating the value of young restricted free
"There were ups and downs," Penner said Monday of his time in Edmonton. "I had a decent first year. The second year was something I think a lot of people would like to forget. The last two I've enjoyed thoroughly.
"I came here with a big contract ... that also comes with big expectations and if I tried to meet everyone's expectations I would drive myself insane. So I focused on becoming more consistent and a player who could play every position. I think I'm on my way to that, I'm not there yet and it's too bad I won't be able to do it here."
Southern California is familiar turf for Penner, 28, who won a Stanley Cup in Anaheim in 2006-07. He will see familiar faces in the Kings' locker room in former Oilers teammates Matt Greene and Jarret Stoll. Penner also kept his home in California, and described the Kings as
"one of the better places I could go."
"It's our job to get him in here and make him part of the
family," Lombardi said. "Obviously, he was passionate about his
colors, and that's good."
Penner, 28, has one more year left on his contract that pays him $4.25 million.
Scott Burnside covers the NHL for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.