I don't think this signing has too much to do with the trade deadline, since Willie Mitchell is a very important cog in the Los Angeles Kings machine at the moment, but giving him a contract extension should boost the morale of some of the players there, knowing full well that he will be around for a couple more years.
On Friday evening, the Kings signed Mitchell to a new 2-year contract extension, worth $7 million, which gives him the exact same cap hit that he signed for when he first came to the Kings in 2010. Mitchell was scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st, but with the Kings in the playoff picture in the West, the 34-year old defenseman was a very unlikely rental player at the deadline.
Mitchell doesn't have much for fantasy pool qualities, unless you have defensive stats in your scoring, because his offense is more of a bonus to any NHL club that has him, since he is quite steady on the back end. In 55 games this season, Mitchell has 3 goals and 9 assists, which is good enough for 109th on the defensive list on Saturday morning.
The Kings are a team to watch with their cap spending, as they have been doing a fair bit of it lately. The move that brought Jeff Carter to the West Coast for Jack Johnson was only a gain of about $1 million against the cap for the 2013 season, but they are still taking on water, in the cap sense. Right now, I have the Kings at a projected annual number of $50.8 million for the 2013 season, which gives them 15 players (nine forwards, four defensemen and both goalies). There are some more players on the list that could hit this projected total, but they have been up and down so much, it's hard to count on them.
The Kings still have some coals burning in the fire for the trade deadline, by the sound of things, and they will be an interesting player in the off-season, so their cap number could be a fun one to watch.