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Like His Players, LA Kings GM Dean Lombardi Deflects Credit For 2014 Stanley Cup Championship

2014 STANLEY CUP CHAMPIONSHIP WRAP-UP: Part 3 of Frozen Royalty’s wrap-up of the Los Angeles Kings winning the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship and the ensuing celebration


LA Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi, shown here addressing the crowd at Staples Center in Los Angeles during the team’s 2014
Stanley Cup Championship Rally.
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — During the on-ice celebration after the Los Angeles Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship on June 13 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, and during their celebratory rally on June 16, also at Staples Center, different members of the organization expressed their gratitude and appreciation for each other and for their fans. But they all had carefully crafted messages for the hockey world.

For President/General Manager Dean Lombardi, the message was that the Kings have climbed to the top of the mountain named “National Hockey League,” and that their unity and resolve would keep them on top, or very close to it, for the foreseeable future.

As reported in this space on June 11, Lombardi stressed the importance of building a team with strong character and leadership traits, right from the start of his tenure with the Kings in April 2006.

That part of his master plan has now paid off in a big, big way.

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Profit Was Not The Primary Goal For LA Kings’ Now-Dashed Plans For Culver City Ice Arena

The landmark sign outside the Culver City Ice Arena.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Without some sort of miracle from above, the Culver City Ice Arena, where the Los Angeles Kings practiced for more than twenty years, starting in the mid-1970’s, is now in its final week of operation, set to close its doors for good on February 2.

Owners of the property have leased it to Planet Granite, which has announced plans to open a yoga, rock climbing and fitness center in that location.

Even though the chances of keeping the rink open are slim, at best, supporters have launched a campaign to save it, and have bombarded Planet Granite with messages protesting their plans.

“Since the announcement of the Culver City location, the Planet Granite team has received a great number of e-mails, phone calls and Facebook posts from members of the Culver City and greater L.A. skating community,” the company said in a statement posted on their blog. “We are overwhelmed by the depth of feeling within this group.”

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If Granted A Reprieve, What Should Happen At Culver City Ice Arena?

CULVER CITY ICE ARENA CLOSING: In the final installment of this four-part series on the impending closure of the Culver City Ice Arena, and the fact that it holds a significant place in the history of the Los Angeles Kings, a former Kings forward, one who is very familiar with youth hockey in the Los Angeles area, shared his thoughts on what could be done at the site, should there be a reprieve for the ice rink.


Photos of the professional staff hang on the wall near the entrance to the Culver City Ice Arena.
The skate rental counter is in the background.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Over the last week, former Los Angeles Kings players and staff have shared their memories from when the team made the Culver City Ice Arena their practice home for nearly twenty years, until they moved to Iceoplex in the San Fernando Valley in 1994.

The Culver City Ice Arena is due to close permanently in less than two weeks on February 2, but there are very slim hopes that Planet Granite, the new lessee, will back out of their lease agreement when they discover how challenging it will likely be to renovate the property due to environmental issues, and turn it into a yoga, rock climbing and fitness facility.

Should they back out, it is possible that the Kings and their owner, the Anschutz Entertainment Group, would make another attempt to lease the property so that it can remain an ice rink.

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Leiweke Out, Beckerman In: How Is Change At The Top of AEG Impacting The LA Kings?

Los Angeles Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi spoke exclusively with Frozen Royalty about how the change at top of the Anschutz Entertainment Group has impacted the team.
Photo: Andrew D. Bernstein/NHLI via Getty Images
and the Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — On March 14, 2013, the Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), the international real estate, retail, and entertainment conglomerate that owns the Los Angeles Kings, dropped a bombshell when they announced that they were no longer up for sale.

But what many considered to be a bombshell with an even greater payload was a part of that same announcement: that Tim Leiweke, the President and Chief Executive Officer of AEG since 1996, would be, “…leaving the company by mutual agreement.”

That Leiweke left AEG amicably is highly unlikely, but that is for another story. In any event, prior to his departure, he had been the front man, the face, the pitch man—he was AEG, as far as so many were concerned, especially since Philip Anschutz has been extremely reclusive while at the top of his AEG empire.

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