Just hours after the NHL lockout officially ended, the defending-Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings made a trade, dealing forward Kevin Westgarth to the Carolina Hurricanes for forward Anthony Stewart, a 2013 fourth-round pick and a 2014 sixth-round pick.
Stewart, 28, scored 20 points (9 goals and 11 assists) in 77 games for the Hurricanes last season. He had a career-high 14 goals and 25 assists for the Atlanta Thrashers during the 2010-2011 season.
Westgarth, 28, played 25 games for the Kings last season, recording two points and 39 penalty minutes. He was a healthy scratch during the Kings' playoff run and was not active for any games after February 16, 2012.
With Westgarth no longer on the roster, the Los Angeles Kings will not return their entire team from last season. However, as of now, 21 out of the 22 players (plus backup goalie Jonathan Bernier) who played at least one game in the playoffs will be on the Kings' 2012-2013 roster.
The only exception is forward Andrei Loktionov, who is still in the Kings' system, but will remain with the Manchester Monarchs for at least the beginning of the season.
After opening training camp on Sunday, the Los Angeles Kings begin the regular season on Saturday, January 19 against the Chicago Blackhawks at Staples Center. The game will begin at 12 p.m. PST and be televised nationally on NBC.