LA Kings trade Sean Durzi to the Arizona Coyotes
(Photo Credit: @LAKings/ Twitter)

The Los Angeles Kings have traded defenseman Sean Durzi to the Arizona Coyotes in exchange for Montreal’s second-round pick in the 2024 NHL Draft.

Durzi, 24, finished the 2022-23 season with 38 points (9G, 28A) in 72 games and one goal in six playoff games. The trade comes after the Kings’ elimination from the Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Edmonton Oilers in a 5-4 loss in Game 6 of the best-of-7 Western Conference First Round.

Durzi’s performance in the playoffs was not as strong as his regular-season performance, with a -4 plus/minus rating and two penalty minutes in six games. Despite the Kings’ loss to the Oilers in the playoffs, Durzi did manage to score a power-play goal during the second period in Game 6.

This trade comes as part of a series of strategic moves by the Kings’ General Manager, Rob Blake to strengthen the team’s future. Blake had previously traded a second-round pick in 2024 to offload Cal Petersen and Sean Walker, and he just replaced it in this trade.

“We believe this trade is a step forward for the Kings”, Blake said. “We appreciate Sean’s contributions to the team and wish him the best in Arizona. This decision was made with the future of the Kings in mind.”

The trade of Durzi to Arizona has been met with mixed reactions, as Durzi has shown potential as an offensive-minded, right-handed-shooting defender. However, while he showed promise during the regular season, his performance in the playoffs was less impressive.

With the Kings expecting defenseman Brandt Clarke, a lottery pick two seasons ago, to join the team full-time next season, Durzi’s departure may not have a significant impact on the team’s defensive lineup.

In terms of trade grade and analysis, the Kings’ decision to trade Durzi can be seen as a strategic move to acquire a valuable draft pick while also making room for the upcoming talent in Brandt Clarke. Durzi’s playoff performance also likely played a role in the decision to trade him.

While the trade of Sean Durzi may have come as a surprise to some, it appears to be a calculated decision by the Kings’ management. Only time will tell how this trade will impact both the Kings and the Coyotes.