2015 NHL Awards Show That League, Writers Still Have Serious Credibility Issues

COMMENTARY/ANALYSIS: West Coast players were shut out once again from the major National Hockey League awards, the league’s annual showcase of its best and brightest, just another reminder of how much of an embarrassing joke the NHL awards have been for years.


LOS ANGELES — The 2015 National Hockey League awards have come and gone, and once again, they have proven to be a complete joke.

Year after year after year, the NHL awards turns out to be an embarrassing knock on the league’s credibility, not to mention that of some of the writers who vote for five of the six player awards (having been a voter for these awards in previous seasons, that includes yours truly) because of the blatantly obvious advantage given to players from Eastern Conference teams, primarily due to the fact that they get far greater attention from the media in Eastern time zone cities and in much of Canada.

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LA Kings GM Dean Lombardi Issues Challenge To Doughty, Kopitar, Quick

LA Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi speaking to the media during the on-ice celebration after the Kings won the 2014 Stanley Cup Championship at Staples Center in Los Angeles on June 13, 2014.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi held another one of his patented, epic media conference calls on June 2, 2015, and during that call, he made it crystal-clear that he is expecting much more next season from his top three players, Drew Doughty, Anze Kopitar and Jonathan Quick.

Lombardi stressed that the challenge begins with their conditioning.

“I’m expecting these three to come back—they’ve never been at the top of our list, in terms of conditioning, and I think that’s going to be the first step for these guys, [for them] to say, ‘OK, it’s my turn,’” said Lombardi. “I think our top players have a chance now to become our best conditioned players. I think any great team—and you can look at the [Nicklas] Lidstroms, the [Steve] Yzermans, the [Tom] Bradys, all those teams, Kobe Bryant—the top players set the mark. It’s not the coach or anybody that gets in their ear. They show up in the top condition, ready to go for a full 82 games.”

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Frozen Royalty Video: Brown, Kopitar and Sutter Media Interviews, 4/13/15

LA Kings forward Dustin Brown
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — As the National Hockey League’s post-season party, otherwise known as the Stanley Cup Playoffs, gets started, teams that failed to earn an invitation to the party are back at their practice facilities for exit interviews, cleaning out lockers, and end-of-the-season medical examinations.

The Los Angeles Kings did not clean out their lockers on April 13, but they were all at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California for medical exams.

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Frozen Royalty Video: Williams, Kopitar, Stoll, Regehr, Pearson, Sutter Interviews, 4/1/15

LA Kings left wing Tanner Pearson
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

EL SEGUNDO, CA — After a spirited practice, their first at home after coming off a five-game road trip, the Los Angeles Kings shifted their focus solely to their next opponent, the Edmonton Oilers, who they host on April 2 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

After practice, a usually large number of players took time to speak with the media, along with head coach Darryl Sutter.

Some of the topics covered in the video interviews with Justin Williams, Anze Kopitar, Jarret Stoll, Robyn Regehr, Tanner Pearson and Sutter (see below) include:

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Frozen Royalty Video: LA Kings Anze Kopitar Talks About New Baby, Fatherhood

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar, shown here at a recent practice.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/CaliShooterOne Photography

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Kings family got a bit larger during the wee hours of the morning on March 14, 2015, when center Anze Kopitar and his wife, Ines, welcomed their first child into the world.

Ines Kopitar gave birth to their daughter, Neza (7-pounds, 2-ounces; pronounced NAY-zah), at 12:38 AM. Anze told reporters that baby and mother are doing just fine.

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