Drew Doughty says Jack Johnson's contract numbers aren't a blueprint for him
Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said Monday that teammate Jack Johnson’s signing of a seven-year, $30.5-million contract extension with the club won’t have an impact on his own contract negotiations with the Kings.
Doughty is in the final year of his entry-level contract and is eligible to become a restricted free agent after the season. He’s represented by high-power agent Don Meehan of Toronto-based Newport Sports.
Meehan and several associates have been in Southern California the last few days catching up with clients -- they represent five members of the Kings -- and were scheduled to attend the Kings’ game against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday night at Staples Center.
“I don’t really think it has any bearing on the amount I’m going to sign for or the amount of years I’m going to sign for,” Doughty said after the team’s game-day skate in El Segundo.
“To be honest with you, I have no idea how long it’s going to be. We haven’t talked at all.
“I’m just here to play and not worry about that stuff. That is why my agent’s out here, to talk and deal with that stuff. I want to know what’s going on and what’s being said, but I’m going to stay out of the negotiating process.”
Doughty, 21, is nearly three years younger than Johnson. However, he was a finalist for the Norris Trophy last season and is considered to have greater upside than Johnson.
Asked if he could imagine committing to a seven-year deal, which is among the longest the Kings have ever given any player, Doughty was, well, noncommittal.
“That is a long time,” he said. “It’s great for the Kings organization to have Jack around for that many years, unless he gets traded. He’s a great player and a huge part of this defense corps and this organization, so it was really good for them to get him.”
The news of Johnson’s signing last Saturday was applauded by his teammates -- including Anze Kopitar, who said the new deal meant that Johnson would have to buy him dinner. Johnson said Monday he plans to pick up the tab for everyone in Dallas, the first stop on the Kings’ next trip.
“It’s the first opportunity I have to buy them dinner and I figured I’d do it on the road when guys don’t have families and stuff around,” Johnson said. “Sometimes at home they have plans and you don’t want to interfere with their plans, so I figured on the road would be a good time to do it.”
He already has a steakhouse picked out and is prepared for teammates to eat hearty and not opt for the petite cut on the filet mignon.
“I would hope they wouldn’t, because I don’t think I would,” he said.
There wasn't much news out of the morning skate. Coach Terry Murray said the lineup will remain the same as it was against Columbus, which means no Brad Richardson, Peter Harrold or Davis Drewiske. Murray said he planned to chat with Richardson and go over some video of the forward's recent games to explain why he's no longer in the lineup.
Also, the Kings said the NHL had made a change on the scoring of their second goal against Columbus on Saturday. The goal, previously awarded to Alec Martinez with assists to Johnson and Marco Sturm, was tipped by Sturm and given to him. The scoring sequence now reads Sturm, with his third goal of the season, from Martinez and Johnson.
-- Helene Elliott
Photo: Drew Doughty. Credit: Thearon W. Henderson / Getty Images