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Proud To Be One of the Original Los Angeles Kings: Defenseman Bob Wall

13 players from the 1967-68 Los Angeles Kings— the Original Kings— were honored by the team during their
50th Anniversary celebration on October 14, 2016, at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Their first captain, defenseman Bob Wall, is in the first row, third from the left.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Dave Joseph/Los Angeles Kings

LOS ANGELES — 50 years ago, the Los Angeles Kings were a brand, spanking new National Hockey League franchise, one of six added when the NHL decided to expand from its Original Six teams in Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Montreal, New York and Toronto.

Six expansion teams joined the league in the 1967-68 season, including Jack Kent Cooke’s Kings, who had players such as Bill Flett, Eddie Joyal, Lowell MacDonald, Ted Irvine, Brian Kilrea, Gord Labossiere, Wayne Rutledge and Terry Sawchuk leading the way.

Their leader, the Kings’ first captain, was defenseman Bob Wall, who scored five goals and added 18 assists for 23 points in 71 regular season games in that first season.

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LA Kings Are Looking To Exorcise Their Demons From The 2015-16 Season

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar, shown here during an October 2016 practice at the
Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California.
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

EL SEGUNDO, CA — With opening night for their 2016-17 National Hockey League season upon them, the Los Angeles Kings would like to exorcise their demons from last season by forgetting all about the way they played down the stretch.

Indeed, the Kings flew through much of the season, leading the Pacific Division for a long, long time. But not only did they blow a 14-point lead in the standings, once they clinched a playoff berth after a win over the Boston Bruins at Staples Center in Los Angeles on March 19, 2016, they went into the tank the rest of the way. In fact, they struggled to a poor 4-6-1 record in the final eleven games of the regular season. To make matters worse, three of those wins came against Pacific Division bottom-dwellers, the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers, with the fourth win coming against a disinterested Anaheim Ducks team that had already clinched the Pacific Division title.

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Jeff Zatkoff Has Come Full Circle With LA Kings

Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jeff Zatkoff, shown here during
their 2016 Training Camp at the Toyota Sports Center
in El Segundo, California.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

EL SEGUNDO, CA — For Los Angeles Kings faithful, if the name “Jeff Zatkoff” doesn’t ring a bell, beyond the fact that he played for the 2016 Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins, it should.

Indeed, Zatkoff got his start in professional hockey with the Kings, who selected him in the third round (74th overall) of the 2006 National Hockey League Entry Draft. But that was also the year that they selected goaltender Jonathan Bernier in the first round (11th overall), and one year prior, they selected Jonathan Quick in the third round (72nd overall).

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Simplicity Is Key For LA Kings Defenseman Prospect Derek Forbort

LA Kings defenseman prospect Derek Forbort
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The 2010 National Hockey League Entry Draft was a deep one, with a vast majority of the first round picks making to the NHL to stay.

But the same cannot be said for the 15th overall pick in that draft, Los Angeles Kings defenseman prospect Derek Forbort, who played 14 games with the Kings last season, but was a healthy scratch more often that not.

Back in June 2010, with the draft held at Staples Center in Los Angeles, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi referred to Forbort as a “project.”

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Michael Amadio Could Be A Gem In The Making For LA Kings

Ontario Reign center and Los Angeles Kings prospect Michael Amadio, shown here in Game 4 of the second round of the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs against the San Diego Gulls at Valley View Casino Center on May 13, 2016
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Vince Rappleyea/Courtesy Ontario Reign

LOS ANGELES — When center prospect Michael Amadio was called up from the North Bay Battalion of the Ontario Hockey League late last season, he went from playing more than thirty minutes per game in the OHL to fourth line minutes with the Ontario Reign of the American Hockey League, the Los Angeles Kings’ primary minor league affiliate.

Indeed, after scoring 50 goals and adding 48 assists for 98 points with a +30 plus/minus rating last season for North Bay, Amadio found himself stuck on the Reign’s fourth line in the first round of the 2016 Calder Cup Playoffs. But that changed quickly.

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