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Retired Athletic Trainer Pete Demers Goes From Stick Boy To 34 Years With Los Angeles Kings

FROZEN ROYALTY EXCLUSIVE: Many will recognize and remember retired Los Angeles Kings athletic trainer Pete Demers, who spent 37 years in the organization. But few know what his job entailed, beyond assisting injured players, or just about anything else, for that matter. In this story, the first of a multi-part series, Frozen Royalty looks at how Demers got his start in professional hockey.


Retired athletic trainer Pete Demers started in the Kings organization
in 1972 with the Springfield Kings of the AHL, before his 34-year stint with
the Los Angeles Kings.
Photo: Demers Family Collection

LOS ANGELES — He never scored a goal in the National Hockey League, but was always at the players bench. He never made a pad save, blocked a shot, or threw a body check on NHL ice, but he was a bigger part of the Los Angeles Kings than most would probably give him credit for.

To be sure, after 34 years and 2,632 consecutive games with the Los Angeles Kings, retired trainer Peter Demers, arguably, the Dean of professional hockey trainers, past and present, left a huge, indelible mark on the franchise.

Of course, those who remember Demers, who retired following the 2005-06 season, have probably seen him behind the bench at a game, or when he has had to run out onto the ice to care for an injured player. But few know much more than that, not only about Demers himself, but also about all the duties and responsibilities of an athletic trainer for a professional hockey team, work that relatively few people ever get to see. Read more of this post

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Butch Goring Was The LA Kings’ First Star, Fan Favorite

Butch Goring
Photo: LA Kings

LOS ANGELES — Long before Anze Kopitar’s skates hit the ice at Staples Center, years before superstar Hall of Famers Wayne Gretzky and Marcel Dionne lit up opponents on the ice at the Forum in Inglewood, California, and even before superstar and should-be Hall Of Fame goaltender Rogie Vachon often won games single-handedly at the Forum, center Robert Thomas “Butch” Goring thrilled fans with his speed, scoring ability and hard work for eleven seasons after being selected by the Kings in the fifth round (51st overall) of the 1969 National Hockey League Amateur Draft.

In the 1969-70 season, his first with the Kings, Goring scored thirteen goals and added 23 assists for 36 points in 59 games. But he wound up splitting time between the Kings’ primary minor league affiliate, the Springfield Kings of the American Hockey League and the big club the following season, playing in just nineteen games at the NHL level.

It was not until the 1971-72 season that Kings fans became enamored with the speed and scoring ability of the St. Boniface, Manitoba native, but Goring quickly became the Kings’ first star and fan favorite. Read more of this post

Los Angeles Kings Fantasy Camp: Doing The Right Thing To Start 2010

LOS ANGELES — Anyone with dreams of hitting the ice with Los Angeles Kings greats Luc Robitaille, Bernie Nicholls, Butch Goring, Marty McSorley and other Kings alumni can have those dreams come true and start the New Year off right, helping those in need, by participating in the Los Angeles Kings Fantasy Camp (for adults 18 or older only), scheduled for January 14-16, 2010, at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California and Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles.

Proceeds from the fantasy camp benefit the Los Angeles Kings Alumni Association and the Kings Care Foundation. Read more of this post

Former LA Kings, Montreal Canadiens Great Rogie Vachon Speaks About Career, Exclusion From Hockey Hall Of Fame

Rogie Vachon
Photo: LA Kings

LOS ANGELES — Many hockey fans in the Los Angeles area have at least heard of Rogie Vachon. They may know that he was the best goaltender ever to wear the jersey of the Los Angeles Kings. But few know of his accomplishments with the Kings and with the Montreal Canadiens prior to his arrival in Southern California.

Even fewer know that Vachon’s accomplishments rank him among the greatest goaltenders to have ever played the game, yet he continues to be denied the honor of being inducted into the hallowed halls of the Hockey Hall of Fame (HHOF).

A close look at Vachon’s career statistics shows that he ranks ahead of a considerable number of goaltenders who were inducted into the HHOF years ago (for details, see Time To Right A Wrong: Hockey Hall of Fame Must Induct Rogie Vachon).

“If there was anyone who deserves to be in the Hockey Hall of Fame who is not—if you look at his numbers, a Vezina Trophy, three Stanley Cups, and the fact is, he wasn’t just the second fiddle Read more of this post

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