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Former Kings Superstar Defenseman Rob Blake Joins LA Kings Braintrust As Assistant GM

ROB BLAKE NAMED ASSISTANT GM: Frozen Royalty brings you in-depth coverage of the Los Angeles Kings naming their former superstar defenseman Rob Blake as their new assistant general manager, replacing Ron Hextall. For those who are critical of bringing Blake back into the fold, be sure to read the next story on Frozen Royalty, featuring Dean Lombardi explaining why the criticism is unwarranted.


Former Los Angeles Kings defenseman Rob Blake was named as the team’s assistant general manager on July 17, 2013.
(click above to view a larger image).
Photo: Wendi Kaminski/NHLI via Getty Images
and the Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — July 18 turned out to be a big news day for the Los Angeles Kings, who named former Kings defenseman Rob Blake as their assistant general manager, replacing Ron Hextall, who has accepted the assistant general manager position with the Philadelphia Flyers.

The Kings also signed winger and captain Dustin Brown to an eight-year contract extension. A story on that, with comments from Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi, as well as from Brown, will be published later here on Frozen Royalty.

Blake played the majority of his National Hockey League career with the Kings, who selected him in the fourth round (70th overall) of the 1988 NHL Entry Draft, beginning his NHL career with the Kings in the 1990-91 season.

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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

LA Kings Retired Trainer Pete Demers Was Honored To Serve On International Stage

FROZEN ROYALTY EXCLUSIVE: Head athletic trainer emeritus Pete Demers not only spent 37 years in the Los Angeles Kings organization, but he lent his expertise to both Canada and the United States on the international level, at World Championships, the 1996 World Cup of Hockey, and the 1998 Olympic Winter Games. In part seven of this series on his career, Demers reflects on his time on the international stage.


Retired Los Angeles Kings head athletic trainer Pete Demers (third from right) worked several international tournaments, but got his start on the international stage, not with his native United States, but with Canada, in 1986.
Photo: Demers Family Collection

LOS ANGELES — In 43 years of existence, the Los Angeles Kings came close once in 1993, but they have never been able to win the Holy Grail of hockey, the most revered and treasured trophy in professional team sports, the Stanley Cup.

That’s 43 years of stinging disappointment felt by players, coaches, general managers, owners, and fans alike. That also goes for the athletic trainers, and Kings head athletic trainer Pete Demers felt that sting for 34 of those 43 years, before retiring in 2006. Read more of this post

Former LA Kings Defensive Stalwart Mattias Norstrom Left The Game On His Own Terms

Former LA Kings defenseman Mattias Norstrom (center), was honored by the Kings
during a pre-game ceremony on October 30, 2010, when the Kings hosted
the New Jersey Devils at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Photo: Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — On a night in which the Los Angeles Kings handed the once-vaunted New Jersey Devils a 3-1 defeat, shutting down the mighty $100 million superstar Ilya Kovalchuk in the process, the Kings took time to pay tribute to their past, and to one of their own.

Former Kings defenseman Mattias Norstrom was back in Los Angeles on October 30, and was honored by the team during a pre-game ceremony.

“It is fun, it’s great being back,” said Norstrom, who played in 780 regular season games with the Kings over eleven seasons after being acquired in a trade with the New York Rangers on March 14, 1996. “I haven’t been back here for two-and-a-half years. The last time I was back was with the [Dallas] Stars in the Spring of ’08.”

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