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KINGS REPORT : Murray, Norstrom Remain Unsigned

September 05, 1999|JIM HODGES

Neither winger Glen Murray nor defenseman Mattias Norstrom reported for physical evaluations and a team meeting Saturday, but both have been invited to the Kings' training camp, which begins today at Iceoplex at North Hills.

Neither is expected to RSVP in the affirmative.

"I'm going to wait until I sign a contract, and I've talked with [Norstrom] and I don't think he's going either," said Murray. "This is the first time [missing training camp] for me and I don't know how it's going to be. But if they want me, just sign me."

The Kings are trying to sign both to three-year deals, but both sides of each negotiation were at least $1 million apart over the three years as last week began. A flurry of proposals back and forth has narrowed both gaps enough for Dave Taylor, the Kings' senior vice president and general manager, to issue the invitations, but not enough for them to be accepted.

Murray, who earned $675,000 last season, is seeking a deal that will approach the league average, about $1.3 million a season. He led the Kings in goals two seasons ago with 29 and was on a pace for that last season before tearing a ligament in his right knee in a Jan. 19 game against Colorado. After missing 19 games, he scored only one goal the rest of the season, which has clouded negotiations.

Norstrom earned $950,000 last season and is seeking a contract in excess of $4 million.

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Winger Jason Podollan also has yet to sign, but he participated in Saturday's activities and is expected to be on the ice today. He and the Kings remain at odds over money in a contract that is expected to be a two-way deal, with an NHL salary and a lower one if he is sent to the minor leagues.

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Tickets for the Kings' two exhibition games at the Great Western Forum are on sale at the box office and through TicketMaster. The games are against Colorado Sept. 14 and the Mighty Ducks Sept. 20, the Kings' finale at the Forum.

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