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More Than Just A Banana Peel Was Hurled At Philadelphia Flyers Forward Wayne Simmonds

Philadelphia Flyers right wing
Wayne Simmonds
Photo: National Hockey League

LOS ANGELES — With National Hockey League training camps having started this week, this is a time when North American hockey fans in particular should be celebrating the fact that the 2011-12 NHL season is just two weeks away.

We should also be celebrating the extraordinary career of one of the all-time greats, center Mike Modano, who will officially announce his retirement at a press conference later today.

NHL fans could also be celebrating new interpretations of rules governing hits from behind and contact with the head, along with pioneering efforts by NHL Senior Vice President of Player Safety and Hockey Operations Brendan Shanahan, to educate players, coaches, general managers, and fans alike through the use of video to explain his decisions in supplementary discipline cases, such as in the recent hitting from behind incident involving Calgary Flames forward Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond, and a separate incident involving Philadelphia Flyers forward Jody Shelley.

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Los Angeles Kings’ 2011 Late-Round Draft Picks Working To Beat Long Odds

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The National Hockey League Entry Draft is one huge crapshoot in terms of teams landing prospects who will make it to the NHL level to stay, let alone big stars, even for those who are lucky enough to be first round picks.

Left wing prospect Joel Lowry spoke to the media
during the Los Angeles Kings 2011 Development Camp
at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California,
July 11-12, 2011.
Photo: Gann Matsuda

For those who end up being selected in later rounds, the odds of making it to the NHL are much, much longer. Nevertheless, every so often, they not only make it to the NHL, but they thrive there.

The most notable cases in point among Kings draft picks (not including active NHL players) would be:

  • Butch Goring, Center (fifth round, 51st overall, 1969)
  • Billy Smith, Goaltender (fifth round, 59th overall, 1970)
  • Dave Taylor, Right Wing (15th round, 210th overall, 1975)
  • Mark Hardy, Defenseman (second round, 30th overall, 1979)
  • Bernie Nicholls, Center (fourth round, 73rd overall, 1980)
  • Kevin Stevens, Left Wing (sixth round, 108th overall, 1983)
  • Luc Robitaille, Left Wing (ninth round, 171st overall, 1984)
  • Rob Blake, Defenseman (fourth round, 70th overall, 1987)
  • Alexei Zhitnik, Defenseman (fourth round, 81st overall, 1991) Read more of this post

Ryan Smyth Is Still With The Los Angeles Kings…For Now, Anyway

LOS ANGELES — Contrary to reports on June 24 that a deal had been completed, veteran left wing Ryan Smyth is still a member of the Los Angeles Kings, and it appears that no deal will happen for the next few days, at least.

Gilbert Brule
Photo: National Hockey League

“Without getting into the details, no, I don’t think we’re closer,” Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi told reporters following Day 2 of the 2011 National Hockey League Entry Draft in St. Paul, Minnesota, on June 25.

The reported deal had Smyth going to the Edmonton Oilers, where he began his NHL career in 1995-96, playing eleven seasons in an Oilers jersey. In exchange, the Kings would receive a fourth or a fifth round draft pick, and forward Gilbert Brule.

Brule, 24, has one year left in a $1.85 million contract, but that’s $1.85 million more than the Kings are willing to carry on their books for him.

In other words, the addition of Brule in the deal is simply to move his salary off the Oilers’ books. Likewise, the Kings would not have retained his services, either, opting to apply that $1.85 million towards the acquisition of a top six left winger. Read more of this post

Blockbuster Deal Gives LA Kings A Potent 1-2 Punch Down The Middle

BLOCKBUSTER TRADE: Los Angeles Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi and Philadelphia Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren got the drop on the rest in terms of draft day deals by completing a draft-eve, blockbuster trade that sent center Mike Richards to the Kings in exchange for right wing Wayne Simmonds, center prospect Brayden Schenn, and a second round pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Also includes details on Ryan Smyth requesting to be traded and about the Kings and the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.


Mike Richards
Photo: Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — With the Stanley Cup Finals and the National Hockey League’s annual awards extravaganza behind us, at this time of year, attention turns to the annual NHL Entry Draft, which is often accompanied by a slew of draft day trades.

But this year, Los Angeles Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi Read more of this post

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