It’s official. After reports surfaced earlier this afternoon that the Los Angeles Kings would sign Brooks Laich, the team announced the signing at 4:30pm. Along with the official tweet, the Kings posted a very geeked out photo of Laich putting ink to his new contract.
Signed ✔️ pic.twitter.com/zUn7G9vHSz
— LA Kings (@LAKings) October 19, 2017
Look at that smile.
Laich signed a one-year contract with an AAV of $650,000. The league minimum salary is typical for players who signed off a professional tryout.
Laich’s signing was reported earlier today after news that Jeff Carter’s injury was more serious than first expected. Carter absorbed a hit from Montreal Canadien Jeff Petry and Petry’s skate cut through Carter’s sock when their legs became tangled. Carter has undergone surgery to repair a cut tendon.
Laich was released from his tryout at the end of the LA Kings training camp, but continued practicing with the team. He never lost hope.
“Last year I had a great conversation with an ex-teammate and great friend of mine, Jeff Halpern, and he said he wished when he went through that situation he would’ve stuck it out until Christmas,” Laich said to the LA Kings Insider. “I think he hung it up at the end of October, maybe early November, so in my mind I was at least prepared – and this is going back to the summer – at least prepared to go through Christmas, probably even to the end of January until I might’ve started looking at a different way of life.
“But I was even prepared to do it on my own, to rent ice every day and to skate on my own. I was fortunate that they allowed me to come back here and keep in shape with NHL caliber guys and also to get to know the team more. I’m glad I didn’t have to go solo to the rink for four months to try and earn a position, but that’s why I’m very grateful to be here today. And that’s why I kept coming back,” Laich continued. “A lot of people have asked me, ‘Why do you keep coming back?” I was mentally prepared to go to the rink by myself and continue working out until December or January 30th, so to keep coming back here the last couple weeks has been very easy.”
Laich now gets the opportunity to prove himself again in the NHL.
“I’m forever in debt to the L.A. Kings. I’m just grateful for the opportunity. You get to this stage of my career, the game means so much more and you’re more grateful for every day, but there’s still so much in me that I want to give and so much I want to do in this sport,” Laich said. “I still feel like it’s my first day in the NHL. I feel young – coming to the rink with so much energy, the body feels great. There’s just so much left that I want to accomplish. I’m definitely not finished yet.”
And yes, Alex Ovechkin congratulated Laich on Instagram.
The LA Kings have signed forward Brooks Laich to a one-year contract, Kings Vice President and General Manager Rob Blake announced today. Laich’s contract will have an Annual Average Value (AAV) of $650,000.
The 34-year-old Laich (born on June 23, 1983) is a 6-2, 200-pound native of Wawota, Saskatchewan, and a veteran of 12 NHL seasons. In 764 career NHL regular season games with Washington, Toronto, and Ottawa, he has amassed 134 goals, 331 points and 301 penalty minutes. His NHL career also includes 65 playoff games, where he’s totaled 10 goals, 32 points and 26 penalty minutes in those contests.
Laich made his NHL debut with Ottawa during the 2003-04 season and then spent the next 11 seasons in Washington where he scored 20-plus goals over three straight seasons (2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10), and registered career highs with 25 goals and 59 points during the 2009-10 campaign. He played for both the Capitals (60 GP, 1-6=7) and the Maple Leafs (21 GP, 1-6=7) during the 2015-16 season.
Laich was a sixth-round (193rd overall) selection of the Ottawa Senators in the 2001 NHL Entry Draft. He signed a professional tryout agreement with the Kings and participated in King’s training camp before being released from the PTO at the end of camp. Since that time, he has continued to practice with the team.
The Kings kick off a six-game road trip on Saturday against the Columbus Blue Jackets at 4:00 p.m PT. The game will be broadcast on FOX Sports West and KABC Radio 790.
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