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Drew Doughty racked up 59 points and became one of the youngest Norris Trophy finalists in NHL history in 2010.
He would miss most of training camp the following season as contract negotiations wore on. Eventually, Doughty and the Kings agreed on an eight-year, $56 million contract, which carries a cap hit of $7 million.
Naturally, there will be high expectations for a player who is among the league’s highest-paid defensemen.
Doughty has been a force for the Kings in recent years, but he hasn’t been one of the NHL’s elite blueliners. He was outside of the top 25 in both points and plus/minus last season, despite appearing in all 48 games. While he was injured, Doughty failed to make the same impact in the 2013 playoffs as he did during L.A.’s 2012 Stanley Cup run.
Doughty will be a strong performer in 2014, but not enough to live up to his $7 million cap hit. Therefore, he will be labelled as an underachiever.