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LA Kings GM Dean Lombardi’s Focus On Character and Leadership Is Paying Dividends

LA Kings winger and captain Dustin Brown
(click above to view larger image
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — With the Los Angeles Kings on the verge of winning their second Stanley Cup Championship in the last three seasons, perhaps as soon as tonight, much has been said about their character and leadership qualities that have been on display throughout the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Indeed, leading the New York Rangers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final, 3-0 in the best-of-seven series, the Kings could win the whole enchilada as soon as tonight, when the two teams face-off in Game 4 at Madison Square Garden in New York (5:00 PM PDT; televised on NBCSN in the United States and on CBC and RDS in Canada).

Character and leadership are usually not even a thought in anyone’s mind while watching their favorite hockey team, and especially here in the Los Angeles area, those characteristics were often scoffed at by pundits and fans alike, who believed that skill and talent were all that mattered.

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Teamwork, Ingenuity, And A Little Engineering Helped Retired LA Kings RW Glen Murray To Skate Again

Former LA Kings right wing Glen Murray was unable to skate after he
retired from the National Hockey League in 2008, due to injury.
But he made his triumphant return to the ice last summer, and
what it took to get him back on skates was a minor feat of
engineering, with some ingenuity and heart thrown in as well.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo courtesy Los Angeles Kings

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Year after year, game after game, body check after body check, those of us who watch the game of hockey often think about all the money National Hockey League players earn, which is certainly nothing to sneeze at.

By the same token, they also pay a high price due to injuries, and all too frequently, they are career-ending, and often debilitating after a player retires.

If you talk to NHL athletic trainers, they can all tell horror stories about how players often retire with fingers, toes and limbs that are bent in ways they aren’t meant to be, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg regarding the injuries and maladies hockey players often have to live with after retirement.

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LA Kings Trade For Defenseman Brayden McNabb Could Be More Important Than Gaborik Deal

EL SEGUNDO, CA — While everyone was ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the Los Angeles Kings acquiring sniper Marian Gaborik from the Columbus Blue Jackets in a trade deadline deal on March 5 (see LA Kings Trade For Marian Gaborik Is A Good One, But… for details and analysis), they may have overlooked another deadline day trade by the Kings that could have a longer and deeper impact on the franchise.

In that deal, the Kings acquired defenseman Brayden McNabb, right wing Jonathan Parker, and second round picks in the 2014 and 2015 NHL Drafts from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for forward/defenseman Nicolas Deslauriers and right wing Hudson Fasching.

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LA Kings Trade For Marian Gaborik Is A Good One, But…

NEWS/ANALYSIS: The Los Angeles Kings made quite the splash on Trade Deadline Day 2014, with the acquisition of high-powered sniper Marian Gaborik from the Columbus Blue Jackets. Was this a good trade for the Kings? A bad one? Does it push them ahead of the pack of legitimate Stanley Cup contenders? For answers to these questions, and for comments on the deal from Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi, read on…


LA Kings left wing Marian Gaborik.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Now former Los Angeles Kings right wing Matt Frattin was skating during the Kings’ March 5 practice when the news broke that he had been traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets, along with a 2014 or 2015 second round draft pick (obtained from Toronto in the June 23, 2013 trade that sent goaltender Jonathan Bernier to Toronto, in exchange for Frattin, and goaltender Ben Scrivens; Toronto has the option on the year), and a conditional third round draft pick, in exchange for oft-injured sniper Marian Gaborik.

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