Colin Fraser's injury means Kings will rework Ryan Smyth trade
Forward Colin Fraser, acquired by the Kings last week in the once-reconfigured trade that sent Ryan Smyth back to the Edmonton Oilers, was found to have an unhealed fracture in his ankle and a cyst that will require surgery. Since he won't be able to start the season, the teams will discuss alternative or additional compensation for the Kings.
The original trade was supposed to send Smyth -- who requested a move for family reasons -- to Edmonton for forward Gilbert Brule. The Kings then planned to waive Brule or buy him out.
Brule, however, was not procedurally cleared to play after suffering two concussions last season. The Kings instead accepted Fraser and said he would compete for a job in training camp.
After agreeing to take Fraser and viewing his medical information, the Kings sent him to see their own medical personnel, who found that a fracture Fraser suffered last season had not completely healed. Tests also found the cyst, which endangers the stability of his ankle. He’s expected to need four months to recover. During that time, he can’t be traded or bought out.
The deal won’t be voided because the Kings don’t want to take Smyth back after he asked to be traded. General Manager Dean Lombardi said Thursday he was “trying to work it out” rather than void the deal or file a protest with the NHL.
It’s always something. … And the NHL’s free agency period begins Friday, with restricted free agent defenseman Drew Doughty still unsigned. It’s possible he will receive an offer sheet from another team, but the Kings would match it.
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-- Helene Elliott