Veer West, Jeff.

It looks like one of the many sagas in Columbus will be coming to a somewhat satisfying end in the near future as it is becoming increasingly clear that Jeff Carter is just about a member of the Los Angeles Kings. That being said, a deal hasn’t been finalized and any players involved would have to pass a physical. This deal is reportedly close, but not quite there.

What is reportedly coming back to Columbus is Jack Johnson and a first round pick. Digest that for a moment.

I understand that Carter hasn’t had the most sparkling tenure in Columbus, but seriously? This is a guy who is just entering his physical prime, averages 30 goals per season, is probably going to score another 25 this year despite missing a boatload of games, and has gone deep in the playoffs before.

If I’m the Los Angeles Kings and I escape with Jeff Carter for the price of Jack Johnson and a first round pick, I’m laughing all the way to the bank. Not many teams can match a Kopitar-Richards-Carter-Stoll center combo and it would have some longevity to it yet.

All of this comes back to the question I asked last week: WHY ARE WE LEAVING THESE DECISIONS TO SCOTT HOWSON???

Columbus is going to trade one of the post-lockout era’s top scorers for an overpaid, one dimensional defenceman and a draft pick which may not be particularly high in the first round? I can’t get on board with this deal from a Columbus perspective if it stands pat at all.

Thoughts folks? I’m particularly interested in hearing what Kings/Jackets fans have to say. Comment, #BShelf, Facebook.

UPDATE: The deal is done, and has been confirmed by the Los Angeles Kings, with the expected Carter for Johnson and a first round pick being the exchange. Only thing standing in the way of it going through now is a failed physical which seems unlikely.

For all of the folks who are quick to bash the Richards-Carter combo, I find it very interesting how quickly the public perception of these guys changed. As of the end of the Stanley Cup finals this year we all thought Philadelphia had a great core to build around with Richards and Carter leading the way and the likes of JVR, Hartnell et al., filling in around them. Then all of a sudden they’re traded and they’re problem children? Come on. I have no doubt that Richards and Carter party as hard as they come, but to suggest that they were going to prevent Philadelphia from winning a Stanley Cup is ridiculous. The goaltending was the issue at the time, it was when they were traded and it still is today. Great job by the Flyers to control the media spin after blowing up their core, but the Kings are a better team after this trade and I have no doubt that they will provide a potent force for years to come.

Oh and they’re playing BEHIND Anze Kopitar, so yeah, that.

Keep up to date on trades with theScore’s trade tracker. We’re updated this thing at the drop of a hat so you know it’ll be up to date.