The 28-year-old Danault enters the Los Angeles organization after a successful stint with the Montreal Canadiens. Finishing top-10 in Selke Trophy voting for the past three seasons, Danault has cemented himself as a truly elite defensive centerman who can play top-six minutes. While he’ll never break the bank offensively, nor should he see power-play time, Danault still carries 40- to 50-point upside with incredible solid possession numbers. He’s coming off a 24-point season in which he shot a near-career-low 6.8 percent, so some increased goal totals for next season should be expected.
Danault currently slots in as the Kings’ second-line center behind Anze Kopitar, but how long he holds that title remains to be seen. Danault’s strength in the faceoff dot likely cements him at the center position, so it’s reasonable to surmise that he could serve as the team’s third-line pivot by the end of the deal. The Kings have many young centers, especially Gabriel Vilardi and Quinton Byfield, who look to be consistent top-six contributors within the next few seasons. However Danault gets used, though, he’ll bring a strong impact to a team who’s struggled mightily defensively in recent years.