Sun, Jan 13, 2013 at 4:07pm


The Carolina Hurricanes acquired winger Kevin Westgarth from the Los Angeles Kings for winger Anthony Stewart, a fourth-round draft pick in 2013 and a sixth-round draft pick in 2014.

What does it give the Carolina Hurricanes
Carolina's primary pugilist last season was defenseman {P Tim Gleason}, who isn't exactly an enforcer. Enter big, bruising Westgarth, who has piled up prolific penalty-minute totals in the minors (as well in limited NHL action the past couple seasons). Like {P George Parros} of the Panthers, Westgarth is a Princeton-educated character guy who can play an occasional regular shift. Clearly Carolina decided they'll need some toughness for the shortened NHL campaign, and perhaps grew tired of waiting for Stewart to regain his scoring touch.

What does it give the Los Angeles Kings
The Kings were amazing during last spring's playoffs but did finish the 2011-12 regular schedule with the NHL's second-fewest goals. That factor--along with top scorer {P Anze Kopitar} being out awhile due to a knee injury--makes adding some scoring punch key for the defending champs. Stewart posted 39 points in 80 games for the Thrashers in 2010-11, so he can be a solid complementary scorer. Meanwhile the draft picks are a nice bonus for a Kings squad that still has {P Kyle Clifford}, {P Dwight King} and {P Jordan Nolan} to handle the tough-guy duties.

Fantasy impact
Stewart could get a nice little boost here fantasy-wise thanks to his change of scenery (and the fact the Kings may need him to score). However, cracking the Kings lineup will be harder than in Carolina, so his value is a wash. Westgarth isn't really a major fantasy factor except in leagues rewarding penalty minutes, but that said he'll likely provide excellent totals now as Carolina's probable top enforcer (so he gets a boost too).

Player focus

Carolina Hurricanes

Kevin Westgarth RW/LW

Los Angeles Kings

Anthony Stewart RW

a fourth-round draft pick in 2013

a sixth-round draft pick in 2014