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Is it time for the Kings to trade Bernier?

Feb 28, 2013, 3:25 PM EDT

Jonathan Bernier Getty Images

The Los Angeles Kings won their fifth straight last night at the Staples Center. The 2-1 victory over Detroit came thanks in large part to a 32-save performance by goalie Jonathan Bernier, who was deservedly named the first star of the game.

For Bernier, the win improved his record to 4-1-0, complete with a 1.64 goals-against average and .931 save percentage.

But perhaps more importantly, for the Kings, Bernier’s impressive stat line could make for quite the sales pitch in trade talks, possibly before the April 3 deadline.

It’s no secret the 24-year-old wants to be moved — not that you can blame him, given starter and Conn Smythe Trophy winner Jonathan Quick is signed through 2022-23.

Bernier was drafted 11th overall in 2006 by the Kings. He’s put up impressive stats in the AHL, but has never been a full-time starter in the NHL.

In 2011-12, Bernier’s NHL numbers as Quick’s backup were passable — a 5-6-2 record with a .909 save percentage — but not great. And it was argued general manager Dean Lombardi was better off keeping Bernier in hopes those numbers improved.

Well, they improved. So, now what?

One team that’s reportedly shown interest in Bernier is Columbus, but that was before Blue Jackets general manager Scott Howson was fired and replaced with Jarmo Kekalainen.

Kekalainen could still be interested. But so too could a number of teams.

  1. ron05342 - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    Well, considering that Quick has been somewhat shaky earlier in the season (not so much now), and that he is still recovering from back surgery, I would say the answer is…

    No.

    Next question, please.

    • aldog83 - Feb 28, 2013 at 9:10 PM

      If Philly wants Bernier they better be ready to send Simmonds back to LA.

  2. ron05342 - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    Oh, and by the way, only someone too deep into fantasy leagues would even think of posing this question at this time.

    The difference, Jason, is that the Kings would like to repeat. In order to do so, they need consistent goaltending. Bernier has supplied that for them.

    So come on now. This isn’t going to happen this trade deadline, just like it didn’t happen last trade deadline. Maybe in the offseason, but it isn’t going to happen before the season ends.

    • Jason Brough - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      I’ve never been in a fantasy league in my life. You realize something would come in return for Bernier, right? Like maybe even a player that’s not sitting on the bench during the playoffs.

      • valoisvipers - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:49 PM

        If you don’t use him why not get a great player in return for him. Having that much talent sitting on the bench night after night is not right, the kid deserves to play and he will become a UFA at some point and walk away for nothing.

      • colby7 - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:24 PM

        I agree, Kings need help on Defence more than a great backup.

  3. uscthom78 - Feb 28, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    Bernier for iginla.

  4. mclovinhockey - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    Bernier would fetch more than iginla. (I meant if you are trying to improve your team for the long haul and not get a rental) heck he could easily get a top prospect for him… Maybe wait till his value is higher and get a prospect and a pick.

  5. rodeoclowndc - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:20 PM

    Columbus could certainly use him, but they have nothing to give (as half of the team is on IR) except their good draft picks. I can’t decide if they should hold on to those, being in a perpetual rebuild mode, or give them up for Bernier to stop the bleeding and build around him. Mason, start packing your bags…

  6. blomfeld - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    TRADE ME, MAYBE …

    As a passionate, ardent and “values-driven” fan of the reigning Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings, my answer to the question of trading Bernier is perhaps not unlike Carly Rae Jepsen’s catchy little tune? On the one hand, it’s so advantageous for us to have such a high caliber backup like Bernier. In fact, few people would argue that we Kings currently have by far and away the absolute “best” 1-2 goalie tandem in the league! However, it’s also not reasonable or even fair to expect that Bernier will continue to serve “faithfully” in Quick’s shadow like this for the next 10 years. He is a professional plying his craft and he is a human being with hopes and dreams, just like everyone else. Therefore as nice as it would be for us Kings to keep him, the “right” thing to do now would be to find him a new home where he can be the starter and thus have the chance to achieve his true potential and personal goals. Besides, as the “top 5″ goalie which he is, trading comrade Bernier is surely going to bring us a “bounty” of talent in return ! :)

    Current ranking of the NHL’s Top goaltenders / source @ Bloomberg Sports

    1) Jonathan Quick
    2) Cory Schneider
    3) Henrik Lundqvist
    4) Jonathan Bernier
    5) Carey Price

    28) Roberto Luongo
    29) Ilya Bryzgalov
    30) Marc-André Fleury

    • phillyphanatic77 - Feb 28, 2013 at 6:26 PM

      Your goalie rankings are asinine. I think we were all happy when you were hibernating.

  7. govtminion - Feb 28, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    Hell, Washington might be interested. Holtby has been very inconsistent, Neuvirth even more so… send, say, Neuvirth and a second round pick?

    • icelovinbrotha215 - Feb 28, 2013 at 7:18 PM

      Why would you trade a goalie for another goalie?

    • govtminion - Feb 28, 2013 at 7:20 PM

      Dammit, I did type Neuvirth, didn’t I? I need to drink coffee before getting on here. That should have read PERRAULT and a second round pick. Sorry, was ranting about their goaltending elsewhere and got my underperforming Caps confused in my head. :/

  8. thtguy90 - Feb 28, 2013 at 6:06 PM

    As a Flyers fan, I’ve been telling people they should trade for this guy ever since he was drafted. He has no shot to be a full-time starter in LA, and although Bryz has been playing well to start this season I’m not completely confident he will be able to maintain this pace. If they buy out Bryz this off season, I could see the Flyers making a strong push for Bernier. Maybe Scott Laughton + a couple of mid-tier picks or a second?

    • phillyphanatic77 - Feb 28, 2013 at 6:32 PM

      Dean Lombardi would want way more than Laughton and mid round pick. I’m sure he’d be asking for someone like Couturier, Laughton, and a 2nd for a goalie with an extremely high ceiling. I watched that game last night and Bernier is well above the class of Bryz. Dude definitely has the ability to steal a game. Since Goalies are the most important player on any team, the Kings aren’t gonna give him away just to help us out. I’d love to have Bernier as a starter in Philly but it’s gonna cost an arm.

    • icelovinbrotha215 - Feb 28, 2013 at 7:19 PM

      Laughton isn’t a proven commodity. L.A. wouldn’t take that for someone of that nature especially they need more help on the blueline.

  9. kingsforever - Feb 28, 2013 at 8:45 PM

    Jason, Ron is right about the fact that Lombardi said he won’t trade him this year.

    However, don’t assume that Quick won’t be traded and that Bernier won’t be the one staying…

    • blomfeld - Feb 28, 2013 at 11:00 PM

      Stand down friend …

      Your excellent handle is enough for me to know immediately that you must be “good” people. Nonetheless, please see to it that you purge your mind of these blasphemous thoughts like Quick “potentially” being traded. As you know, we Kings’ fans are a “values-driven” fan base and things like loyalty, honor and “purity of the mind” are very much a part of our credo. Quickie to the Kings, is like a heart to the lion. “He” more than anyone is the reason why we turned the NHL upside down last year and thus became the “greatest” professional ice hockey team in the world today! And “he” again will be in the vanguard of our assault this spring, as we seek to reassert our glorious and righteous place as Stanley Cup Champions. No my friend, comrade Quick will be remaining with us, no different than the Goddess of Victory whose favor has now become ours!

      • bigpappi - Mar 1, 2013 at 12:28 PM

        I can only say that was one of thee best reply’s I have ever herd go kings go

  10. loyallakingsfan35yrs - Mar 1, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Tell them blomfield!

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