Kings in London

Nothing official has been announced yet, but it’s almost certain that the Kings will open next season with two games in London against the Ducks. It’s a way for the NHL to expand internationally, and for AEG to have a high-profile event to fill the arena it is renovating and reopening in London this summer, but what does it mean from a hockey standpoint?

Trouble. Most likely.

Dean Lombardi surely remembers his third season as GM in San Jose, which started with two games in Tokyo against Calgary. After the second game, the Sharks had just eight days before they resumed their season, and things didn’t go well. The Sharks went 0-5-1 upon returning to America. The Sharks went on to finish seventh in the conference that year. Calgary wasn’t as lucky. The Flames went 1-5 upon their return to America and finished ninth in the West.

How about the year before? The Ducks and Vancouver split two games in Tokyo. Both teams went a respectable 2-3-2 in the first seven games in the U.S. but they finished as the two worst teams in the Western Conference.

It’s a tough thing, to come back from time overseas and resume a season. In 2004, the Yankees and Devil Rays played a four-game series in Tokyo. The Yankees then lost nine of their first 15 in America and the Devil Rays lost 13 of their first 18. Well, the Devil Rays stunk anyway, but you get the picture. Even the Clippers, who spent their training camp and exhibition season in Russia, seem to have been in a slumber this season.

So…good luck, Kings.

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  • http://www.thescoreboards.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=92 Albi

    This is great news for european kings fans like me!

  • Michael Teniente

    The Kings are going to be a contending team in about 1 and a half.

    mike

  • Michael Teniente

    I love the kings. I’m excited about the new direction. I’ve been following the Kings before they traded for Marcel Dionne. I remember how the newspaper made a big deal about Marcel coming to L.A. Those were the beginning of some exciting years. Then Gretzky…that was crazy. We almost won the Stanley Cup with Wayne. If it wasn’t for that dumb Marty McShorely having the stupid stick in the 2nd game against the Canadiens we would have won the Cup. We had won the 1st game and were winning the 2nd game on the road and Marty got called for that stick. The Canadians scored a goal, the game went to overtime, I think, and we lost. We lost all momentum due to that McShorley penalty.

    But it’s a new era. Bring it on, baby! Bring it on!

    mike

  • Michael Teniente

    The Kings are my only sports team that hasn’t won a Championship. When they get there…I’ll be cheering all the way.

    mike

  • Pete – Norway

    I’ll be there!!

    Kings and NY Giants to London in same month! GREAT!!

    32#Pete

  • Frolov Fan

    History shows that teams that start of their games in foreign market publicity games like this usually have slow starts to the season. This is the right timing as the Kings arnt expecting to do much for a few more years. Hopefully this doesnt become an annual tradtion!