Lucic wants to stay in LA; Lecavalier waits to address retirement

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Josh Cooper
(Photo by Juan Ocampo/NHLI via Getty Images)
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LOS ANGELES – Milan Lucic doesn’t want to leave Los Angeles this summer as an unrestricted free agent.

The hulking winger, who was acquired by the Los Angeles Kings last offseason was hopeful he and the team could work out a deal that could keep him in Southern California. He just finished the final season of a three-year $18 million contract. 

“Yeah, for sure. I definitely hope that it is not my last game as a King. Aside from today and this series, it was a lot of fun being a King, and I really enjoyed everything about this organization from the management, to the coaches, to the players, to the fans,” Lucic said after the San Jose Sharks eliminated the Kings in Game 5 of their first-round playoff series.

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Lucic had a nice bounce-back year with Los Angeles after a tough final season with the Boston Bruins. Lucic scored 20 goals and added 35 assists for 55 points. He was also a plus-26. The year before, Lucic had 44 points in 81 games.

“The way everyone is treated here is definitely first class. Hopefully we can get something done here before July 1st so I can remain a King. I am hopeful and positive that I will be here more than just one year,” he added. 

Lucic isn’t the only big-named Kings player who needs to address his playing future this offseason. Forward Vincent Lecavalier, who has said he will retire after this season, declined to speak about his future after Game 5. Lecavalier has remained steadfast that he won’t play next season, even though he has two years remaining on his contract. The Kings are on the hook for $2.25 million of his salary cap hit and his number doesn’t fit into their plans. 

After a trade from the Philadelphia Flyers during the season, the 36-year-old Lecavalier solidified the Kings’ third-line center role with 10 goals and 17 assists in 42 games played. At times, he played his role so well that it led to questions as to whether he does indeed want to end his NHL career. 

If Lecavalier is done playing in the NHL, he will finish his career with 1,212 game played, 421 goals, 949 points, one Stanley Cup and one Rocket Richard Trophy. He was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1998 NHL Draft. 

The Kings said Lecavalier will discuss his hockey future after his exit interview with the team.

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Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!