The title of this post is somewhat misleading, seeing as Kings GM Dean Lombardi appears to have abandoned what little respect he had left for Dustin Penner. That’s not to say Lombardi has zero respect for Penner, oh no. Make no mistake, Dean Lombardi would most likely slot Penner in the cleanup spot on his beer league softball team.

Lombardi is apparently familiar with Penner’s ability to crush balls. At least that’s what we’re going to take from this golden quote from the Kings’ GM.

Via Craig Custance of Sporting News:

“Dustin is at the crossroads of his career,” Lombardi wrote in an email to Sporting News. “He can choose to use his athletic ability to either become a dominant power forward in the National Hockey League or be a dominant number four hitter for the El Cid Lounge in a men’s softball league — the choice is his.”

It all makes sense now, Penner’s got it made in L.A. He could walk away from hockey now and work on his OPS with the El Cid Lounge and be perfectly happy. Shit, he’d have all kinds of time on his hands to do menial things like email Terez Owens.

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