By: Adam Gretz
Less than 24 hours after adding what should be a key piece to the Kings organization (forward Jeff Carter), general manager Dean Lombardi managed re-sign another key player (one that was already on the team) on Friday evening by agreeing to a new two-year deal with defenseman Willie Mitchell.
The contract is reportedly worth $3.5 million per season, which is the exact same salary cap hit his previous contract carried.
Mitchell originally joined the Kings prior to the 2010-11 season after spending four years with the Vancouver Canucks, and in his first 112 games with the Kings has scored eight goals to go with 13 assists. His greatest asset (and value to the Kings) is his ability to play as a shutdown defenseman. He logs on average over 21 minutes of ice-time per night, and when he is on the ice the Kings rarely get scored on. This season he has only been on the ice for 1.37 goals against per 60 minutes of 5-on-5 play, which is the best mark of any defenseman currently on the Los Angeles roster.
It's been quite a busy 24-hour period for the Kings defense, as Jack Johnson was shipped to Columbus in the trade that brought Carter to Los Angeles, which was then followed by Slava Voynov being called up from the American Hockey League.
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