city madrid

GM: Roland Lavoie (only GM in team’s history)

Coach: Dan Bylsma

Last season: 11th overall, lost to Lisbon in Round 1

Ins and Outs (Season 5 to Season 6)

Out: Nick Holden (trade), Brian Gionta (retired), Brooks Laich (free agent), Alex Tanguay (free agent), Brandon Prust (free agent)

In:   Shea Weber (free agent),  Alex Steen (free agent), Derek Roy (trade), Carlo Colaiacovo (trade), Mackenzie Blackwood (draft)

In Place (Key players signed or restricted free agents past Season 6)

Erik Karlsson, D; Shea Weber, D; Gabriel Landeskog, LW; Derek Stepan, C; Robin Lehner, G




Three Questions

1. What does the addition of Alexander Steen do? Last season, Derek Stepan and Gabriel Landeskog carried much of the offensive load for the Royals. True, they had the amazing Erik Karlsson working the puck up to them and distracting defenders while he was doing it, but the two star forwards could have used a little more help on the right side. Alexander Steen has joined the forward group, but he plays left wing and will basically enable Madrid field at least three strong lines this season. Here’s where he really helps: he moves to the right side with Stepan and Landeskog on the powerplay to make it really, really dangerous, even before you look at who’s manning the points on that PP unit. Karlsson, of course, is there; and now, on the other point …. (drum roll) … Shea Weber. We now present a partial transcript of every coach’s talk before a team plays Madrid  … “Don’t take penalties, guys. Just don’t. Please.”

2. What is their main strength? Balance throughout the lineup will be a hallmark of Royals hockey this season. Not only does Madrid have a vastly improved powerplay, Weber also gives them better penalty killing. The forwards on the kill are accomplished defensive players in Stepan, Landeskog, Sean Couturier and R.J. Umberger. Those are four smart, talented penalty killers if there ever were any. Madrid might be a strong right wing away from having three-plus dangerous lines. Chris Stewart will start the season patrolling the wing on the top line, and Andrew Cogliano will play with Swedes Steen and Patrik Berglund. Umberger is the right wing on a good checking line that can score, and on the fourth line, there could be some magic with Lee Stempniak and Patrick Roy playing together. Coach Dan Bylsma has a lot of options available to him up front. He could move Dan Winnick to the checking line and Chris Kreider to the Roy-Stempniak line; he could try Umberger or Cogliano with Stepan and Landeskog; there are lots of options. The trick will be finding chemistry. And even if they don’t find it soon, the team looks strong enough on paper to make it into the playoffs again this season. The addition of Roy, by the way, was a shrewd move by GM Roland Lavoie. He traded Nick Holden, who became expendable with the signing of Weber, for Roy and Carlo Colaiacovo, thereby adding depth and injury insurance up front and on defense.

3. How well will they be able to keep pucks out of their net? On the blueline, Madrid again has impressive balance. They have a blend of youth and experience – three of the six defensemen are 30 or 31 years old, while the others are 23-26. They have offensive threats in Karlsson, Weber and Nick Leddy, and stay-at-home guys in Andrej Meszaros, Roman Polak and Jonas Brodin.  Weber and Polak are big and strong; Karlsson, Leddy and Brodin can skate like the wind. The signing of Weber seems to help the team in so many ways.  In goal, big Swede Robin Lehner gets the number one job. On paper, with his goalie rating of 88, the 24-year-old looks quite capable. In 157 games with Madrid over parts of four seasons, he has a 72-66-11 record with an ever-improving goals against average that was 2.76 last season and a lifetime save percentage of 89.9. Behind him on the depth chart are four other goalies including veteran Jonas Hiller and Darcy Kuemper, who has yet to play a game but is penciled in as the backup for the season opener against Bratislava. Last season, the team was 8th best in the league at keeping pucks out of their net. With the addition of Weber and the maturation of Karlsson, Brodin and Leddy, not to mention six good defensive forwards, they have a good chance to improve this season.


Season                 Place        PTS        PP %      PK %      SPG        SAPG     GPG     GAPG    PIM

Season 5              11              92        19.7         82.10     31.13         28.98       3.17         3.09       9.27

Season 4              17             81         19.5         83.6       30.77      32.00        2.99         3.40       10.79

Season 3              8               94          18.7        78.0        33.35     28.30        3.51         3.28       9.45

Season 2              17            83         17.4         83.9        31.72      28.74        3.15          3.33       9.76

Season 1              9              95          22.6        80.3        30.85       29.05        3.68        3.29        9.01

Top Draft picks

Season 1: Erik Karlsson, D, current age 26. Games played: 408; points: 273; -69

Season 2: Erik Ersberg, G, age 28. GP 66, Save Pct. 88.3

Season 3: Marko Dano, C, age 21. GP 65, Pts 25, -8

Season 4: Haydn Fleury, D, age 20

Season 5: Loic Lamperier, LW, age 21.

Season 6: MacKenzie Blackwood, G, age 18.

Trade History

Season 1 (picks without years listed are from initial draft)

Traded Max Pacioretty to Frankfurt for Round 7 pick (used to draft Slava Voynov),   Round 10 pick (later traded) (Trevor Daley) and 2013 Round 2 pick (Erik Ersberg)

Traded Dustin Brown, Round 10 pick (Trevor Daley) and Round 11 pick (Chris Kreider) to Milan for Gabriel Landeskog

Traded Sammi Pahlsson to Bern for Round 20 pick (Brandon Prust) and Round 22 pick (Mark Visentin)

Traded Michal Neuvirth, Nick Johnson and 2013 Round 1 pick (Martin Ruzicka) to Athens for Tomas Vokoun

Traded Henrik Sedin to Milan for Jordan Stall, Chris Kreider and 2013 Round 2 pick (Jonas Brodin)

Traded 2013 Round 2 pick (Eliezer Sherbatov) to Milan for Biran Rolston

Season 2

Traded Slava Voynov, 2014 Round 2 pick (traded later) (Robert Hagg), Round 1 pick (traded later) (Sean Monhan) to Berlin for R. J. Umberger, Brayden Coburn, Mikhail Grigorenko and a second-round pick(traded later) (Josh Morrissey?)

Traded Erik Ersberg to Berlin for Brian Campbell and 2014 Round 3 pick (Marko Dano)

Traded Saku Koivu to Prague for Chad Larose and 2015 Round 2 pick (Jake Virtanen)

* seem to be missing one trade that probably occurred in here somewhere

Season 3

Traded Jeff Carter, Ryan Johansen and 2015 Round 1 pick (Nikita Kucherov) to Stockholm for Rick Nash and 2015 Round 2 pick (Haydn Fleury)

Season 4

Traded Tomas Vokoun and 2015 Round 2 pick (Nikita Scherbak) to Stockholm for Jonas Hiller

Traded Rick Nash, Fedor Tyutin, Braydon Coburn and Patrick O’Sullivan to Edinburgh for Derek Stepan, Chris Stewart, Dan Winnick and Francois Beauchemin

Season 5

Traded Marko Dano and 2017 Round 2 pick to Copenhagen for Andrej Meszaros

Traded Jordan Staal to Minsk for Patrik Berglund and Nick Leddy

Traded Andrew Cogliano to Copenhagen for 2016 Round 2 pick (Reto Suri)

Traded Brian Campbell and 2017 Round 1 pick (Jean Gabriel Pageau) to Copenhagen for Brooks Laich, Andrew Cogliano and Nick Holden.

Season 6

Traded Nick Holden to Helsinki for Derek Roy and Carlo Colaiacovo

After Season 6 started:

Traded Lee Stempniak, Dan Winnik, Jonas Hiller and 2018 Round 1 pick to Copenhagen for Nathan Gerbe and Colin Greening

Traded Nick Leddy and Chris Stewart to Moscow for Blake Wheeler, Marc-Andre Bourdon and 2018 Round 3 pick

Lost Jonas Hiller (waivers)


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