Stepping away

Hey folks…I’m signing off for a much-needed two-week vacation. It comes with a bit of regret, since the blog really seems to have hit its stride recently, but I promise that I’ll be back at the end of the month and we will start gearing up for training camp. If something of significance — hello, Mr. Cammalleri — happens over the next two weeks, I’ll make sure to jump on and provide updates. I might even get bored at some point and just post some stuff anyway. I might also look into the possibility of having a mystery guest blogger or two provide their thoughts.

But regardless, when I get back I want to see us pick up right where we left off. It’s been a lot of fun recently.

Along those lines…I don’t like doing this, because this blog isn’t about ME, but there have been some questions about what I might be doing when the NHL/NBA seasons come around. And I’ll just be honest with you. There has been some serious talk about me moving over to handle a lot of Lakers stuff, but the success of this blog in recent weeks is leading management to reconsider. I’m very hopeful and optimistic that I’ll still be covering the Kings in the fall. I’ve enjoyed doing this more than anything I’ve done in my 11-plus years of daily journalism, and that’s largely a tribute to all the support and enthusiasm that has come from you. I’m very grateful for that, and I’ll promise you this: if you continue to visit this site in huge numbers — as you have been in the last few weeks — it won’t be going anywhere.

So my parting question is this: how can I make this better? Once the season starts — and training camp too, other than when they’re in Europe — the possibilities are tremendous. By September, this won’t just be a blog. It will be a much more functional page for Kings information and discussion. So let me know what you’d like to see. Be as creative as you’d like, and we’ll sort it all out and see what’s popular and realistic.

Again, thanks to everyone for your continued support…

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  • Jayson

    rich, don’t go!! just look at the number of threads started on letsgokings.com thanks to your articles. enjoy your vacation

  • Daniel

    Thank you ever so much for being the best source of Kings news out there! In short, you rock. If you keep this up you’ll have your own fan club soon :)

    Enjoy your vacation, it’s well-deserved.

  • Chris

    I hope you have a great vacation, Rich! I agree with you that more fan interaction would be great here. A chat room along with a message board would be awesome for all of us to get together and discuss our Kings with an anchor such as yourself being able to always get us insider info with your direct access to Kings management. With this, I’m sure in due time you’ll not only surpass the USC page, but also become one of the most visited sports blogs on the internet.

    Thanks for all your hard work. Now go take a much needed 2 weeks off!!

  • kingofdodgers

    Rich, have a great two weeks off.
    This site is going to be exponentially more popular once the season starts.

  • Hasekbowstome

    Again, you do a phenomenal job on this blog, Rich, and I hope you can continue doing it. That said, enjoy your vacation, you’ve certainly earned it after the busy month you’ve had. I’ll look forward to your return!

    As for site improvements, especially if this is to become more of a Kings news/info site as opposed to a straight blog, getting up more information like the team roster, with lots of details for each player (cap hit and contract details, click here for stories involving this player, etc. in addition to plain old goals/assists/points) would make it a bit easier when you see something said on the blog or on the comments, to be able to easily find the relevant information elsewhere on the site. Also, make an archive of your interviews with Lombardi and put up a link to it, I think that is absolutely the coolest thing about this blog, is the amount of inside information and contact you receive from the franchise, right on up to its highest levels. Tack on a message board for an easier format for discussing the Kings and hockey in general as opposed to comments, and I think you’ll be all set.

  • BallPointHammer

    Thank you very much for the effort, thought and commitment you put into covering the Kings and doing your blog. The insight and information provided is something I never thought would be available to the fans. I hope you can stay with the Kings and are able to grow the site as you see fit. Let the powers that be know that Kings fans love their team and that your site is a must read. Thanks again!

  • dbushik

    The strength of the blog is the access to Lombardi and the insight into what the organization is thinking. Not sure focusing on fan interaction like message boards would be improvement. It’s been the news content that has had me interested.

  • Mike

    Have to agree with dbushnik about focusing on the content that comes from your access to the team than a message board (as long as comments are still available to your posts).

    If there is interest in giving the site a different structure and less like a straight blog of course there could be things to add like a schedule and roster/stats (incl. each player’s page with links to your posts related to them). I liked your gameday/morning skate notes along with starting goaltenders, etc. Perhaps there could be an info box (similar to the links and things to the right of this blog) with game day information and a link to your notes and quotes. That way you could leave player interviews/stories on signings/trades closer to the top of the page and more central. Perhaps another box or section could deal with the questions you’ve thrown out such as line pairings/who stays or goes/etc.

    Regardless, I am addicted to this blog and will come back to it several times each day no matter what format it takes on. Thanks for your hard work!

  • Greg

    Rick,

    Thanks for a great web site. Your column provides the absolute best Kings information out there. I check your site twice a day! Keep up the good work, enjoy your vacation, and please fight to keep this column alive.

    Regards,

    Greg

  • http://www.letsgokings.com Rinkrat

    After running a Kings message board for 10 years, I have to agree that making a full blown message board would be a lot more work thatn it’s worth for something we already have. I’d like to see your time focussed on getting the exclusive information for us fans and not moderating a message board.

  • fat Elvis

    Enjoy the time off Rich, vacation is often wasted away. So live it up.

    As for improvements, how about more of the same. You have provided one of the few avenues between fans and management. If you can keep the Q and A between fans and DL going from time to time would be great. He seems like a straight shooter, so maybe he wouldn’t mind.

    Thanks Rich, job well done.

  • fourtunato

    Thanks Rich,

    I second and third the other posters regarding fan interaction. It’s way overrated and we already have it elsewhere. Concentrate on inside info. I come to this page two and three times a day now.

    Tell management that I just subscribed to the Daily News to support you and this blog.

    We do not need more information on the Lakers. We need this kind of coverage of the Kings.

  • Jayson

    I’ll have to agree with fat Elvis. Yours is the only web site that I know of that has so much exclusive info about the Kings. If the lakers fans want to hear about the lakers, they have plenty of resources. Us Kings fans have only you my friend. Please have your management reconsider. We need you man.

  • Mike Blazenski

    Rick,

    Keep up the good work and enjoy the vacation.

    To make it better–we fans always seem to be the last to know about team chemistry and clubhouse problems. Can you report on these throughtout the year. ie. Sean Avery not being popular in the clubhouse and with the coaches.

  • Bryan

    Like some others have said I like coming here for the DL,MC, and player interviews. Its also nice when you break some news first before anyone else like the Visnovsky numbers.

  • BOB

    If you do decide to incorporate a message board, please don’t take any notes from LGK. That site is ridiculous with all the crap you have to sift through just to read anything intelligent. Everyone is a comedian over there and some of us just want to talk about the Kings, that’s what is great about this blog….don’t lose that.

  • JIM FROM RIVERSIDE

    Not since the ‘HERALD EXAMINER’ past into history have I enjoyed reading articles about our KINGS both here and in your paper, my problem is there are not many places to get the paper here in the RIVERSIDE area.I’m in the a/c service business and cover all 5 counties so I make a point to pick one up when I can thanks to your coverage.Lets hope your editors are as wise as they seem and leave you here where you seem to have a passion for what your doing.There are plenty of reporters covering the LAKERS but if you move over there you’ll be one of the best,’THE CREAM ALWAYS RISES’.Thanks for all the effort and good luck however it turns out,enjoy your vacation….

  • BobMillersHair

    Great work Rich. I would chip in to help pay to make you stay.

    How to make more functional page for Kings info?:

    An obvious addition would be current King roster and player stats, IMO I like how tsn.ca/nhl has theirs set up.
    ….But I have always been a big fan on prospect information. Two of my main stops for prospect info is hockeysfuture.com and monarchshockey.com.
    What I would like to see is something similar to hockeysfuture.com. But problem is that they do not update stats and info on players but once a year. I think that an updated prospect page would be sick. All prospects not just Monarchs roster. CHL, NCAA, Euro…..

    Also I agree with alot of comments above that this site is gold because it gives us an insite on management and players of “our” team. That is key. Not necessarily the blog.

    Keep up the GREAT work. You are L.A.’s Hockey Crusader.

  • tullskull

    Rich, I am already checking the site about 5 times a day! My opinion is as long as the kings will talk to you, and you will talk to us, there is no need for improvement. Thanks for doing such a great job.

  • ProgMetalOne

    Two words: You Rock.

    Enjoy the “break” and keep on keepin’ on.

  • Danny

    Rich pleeeaassse don’t leave us for good! You are our the best we’ve got. I can’t imagine not coming to the site to see what is up with our Kings!

  • Lon

    Rich,

    Thank you so much for the the insider feel to the Kings you have provided over the last 7 weeks or so. This is something that I look at atleast 3-4 times a day and that is during the off season! I think if you keep the format the same, it wuold be ok for me. We dont need a bunch of mucky mucks clouding up this site as well, with their percieved opinions. Keep up the good work and keep this ball rolling, but enjoy your vacation.

  • CBGB

    (e4)

  • Paul

    I’ve always wanted a site that gave regular info on the kings. One reporter, like yourself, who follows the kings and lets the public in on what he knows. This is that site. No frills, simple. Even if you get reassigned to the lakers (start a blog for them too!) I hope you can convince the next guy to follow in your footsteps and keep this going just as it is. Thanks.

  • Rob

    Rich,
    This site is about information and it is greatly appreciated. I suggest keeping the message board stuff to a minimum. When things get slow, throw out a topic like you have this week. But I think what most of us are after is the “Inside…” scoop!!

    Thanks a million!

  • El Guapo

    Everyone’s said it already. I check this page multiple times every day. The best part is your access and insight. Don’t worry so much about message boards since they’re already out there. This is the best source of Kings news bar none, and page visits will only increase during the season. If you get assigned off the Kings there is going to be a loud and nasty outcry from the people who have grown to enjoy your coverage so much- warn your editors…

    If I could make a suggestion about improvements, I’d say maybe add guest bloggers like Bob Miller, Jim Fox, etc (even DL, MC/assistant coaches and RH themselves?); and maybe have you make guest appearances on Fox broadcasts to give your info and hopefully even debate with those guys. We’re fans and care a lot but you guys are journalists who are around the team every day- it would be so interesting to see your opinions (in addition to just straight info) come out in that kind of format- kind of like HFboards or LGK, but by people who REALLY know what they’re talking about.

  • matt

    Enjoy your vaction rich, you deserve i really hope you stay and cover the Kings, living in Ottawa, Canada I don’t exactly get kings coverage in the media, i love this blog b/c it keeps me up to date and check everday for updates, thanks for all the hard work you do

  • Francis

    Your blog is terrific as is. I love your inside info that is not available to me anywhere else. Thanks!
    A chat room = no
    Message boards = no
    Rich’s info = yes! yes! yes!
    I am goiong to miss your postings while you are gone. Enjoy your vacation but hurry back!

  • krushelnyski

    Rich, enjoy you well deserved vacation. This site is perfect as-is, all we need is for you to continue running it the way you have been, all season long. Kings fans have so few, worthwhile resources to turn to for hockey coverage, but this site has become beacon of light.

    The Lakers have plenty of coverage in plenty of places. Please keep this site alive…

  • jom

    A couple of things:

    1) Have a nice vacation…

    2) Please don’t leave us for the Lakers…god, am I tired of hearing about them.

    3) You don’t need to improve necessarily. By virtue of you just DOING something like this is by far and away better than what Kings’ fans have had before.

    jom

    PS: God…please…NO LAKERS.

  • SirJW

    What I hope you will be able to do is travel w/ the team on the road this season.

  • Moondoggie

    Hey Rich, just keep doing what you’re doing, providing inside info on the Kings, particularly with DL and management. That’s where this blog is so successful, you freezing your tail off at El Segundo early in the morning finding out what’s really happening with the team, not through a team press release. During the off season, continue to post questions like you have been, getting the fans more involved and thinking about our team. Like everyone else, the Lakers have plenty of coverage and more is not needed even tho you’d work miracles over there. Don’t go!

    Have a great vacation. If you’re headed to Maui, dinner is on me at Mama’s Fish House, deal!

  • paul

    Rich, I gotta say that your site has been a breath of fresh air. What i like about your site is that it is based on real stories and fact. The insight you have given has been tremendous. its nice to come to your webpage and be able to find out in an instance what is going on with the kings. I dont have to weed through all the other nonsence and personel opinions(experts) that are on lgk and other blogs. Keep to the facts, and the great interviews. Tell your editor that if his paper had been doing stuff like this I would be buying it daily for my lunchtime reading. What makes your site a succes is that you Its a rare place where you can find info on the Los Angeles Kings. The Lakers fans have a million places to go, they dont need another. Turn on any sports station and its all lakers all the time. Now the Kings have a voice and its refreshing.

    paul

    PS: have a great vacation

  • Ron

    Thank you so much for the blog and enjoy your vacation.

  • Mike

    I think that someone should talk to Kings management. Rich’s hard work, passion, and tasteful journalism can really help the game of hockey take off in Southern California. Giving exceptional people a platform is critical in the growth of this teams fan-base. The NHL, and the cities of Anaheim, and Los Angeles have and will benefit from Rich’s in depth and non-traditional coverage.

  • Mike

    Rich, have a wonderful vacation. I would strongly suggest some fishing in Cabo and some partying with the wife. Let me know if you are heading down and I’ll make sure Sammy takes care of ya.

  • Jen4kngs

    I second, third, fourh, etc. what everyone is saying! Keep the blog as is with perhaps the schedule and team roster as additions. I have read and re-read the DL interviews many times because its just amazing to finally be a “fly on the wall” when it comes to the decisions made by the team. EXCELLENT insight!!! Thank you 1000 times over for your work on this blog! If your editors could put you on road trips with the team, all of us fans would be in heaven. Sucks to have to read an AP post with NOOOOO details in the morning paper! Thanks and STAY WITH THE KINGS!

    PS…Have a GREAT and WELL DESERVED vacation!

  • deacon blue

    Rich–there have been some great suggestions out there, but I wouldn’t change too much. I love this blog for its insights, insider information, knowledgeable comments, and respect that we have for you, for one another, and above all, for the great Kings’ fan tradition of staying loyal to the team no matter what. Thanks for your hard work; I read a lot of hockey team blogs and few come even close to the quality and expertise of this one. If your bosses read this blog, as they must, it’s up to us Kings fans to make sure you stay covering the Kings. We can do this just by reading and contributing consistently, as I’ve seen it done over the last couple months. Have a terrific, well-earned vacation.

  • Fletch

    Have a good vacation, Rich….hopefully wherever you’re going has plenty of sun and plenty of margaritas.

  • Chazz Loeks

    I like the idea of a chat room here, and hate the idea of you leaving us for the Lakers. You think there’s a lot of people visiting this sight now… just wait till the season starts.

  • Rick Caldwell

    Rich,

    Great job on the blog.

    As far as improving it goes once the season starts, how about links to stories about the Kings’ minor league teams.

    Maybe periodic updates on our top prospects that are still playing in the CHL or NCAA by having quick interviews with their coaches.

    Outstanding job. Kings fans really appreciate a media outlet where they are finally #1. Oh yeah, and F T.J. Simers and his anti-hockey rag.

  • CiscoC

    Rich,

    This is one of the first sites I look up each day, and check back periodically several times. You do a great job and it is exciting to have something like this after being shafted by that other LA paper earlier this year. I cancelled my sub with them and moved over to your paper because of your blog.

    I think a fan blog section would be cool where you choose a blog of the week that was submitted by a fan.

    If this blog turned into a Laker blog, it would end up being skipped right over by everyone tired of the Lakers and the NBA (much like AM 570).

    Have a great vacation!

  • Boris

    Rich, I like the Lakers and all, but I would HATE to lose you and your coverage of the Kings. There’s more than enough lakers coverage and I care about the Kings much more anyway!! We’ll make sure to keep the traffic on this page high!

  • craig clark

    Is there anything us fans can do to help this blog continue. This is the best thing to hit the Kings since Gretzky! WE do not want to lose you! Lets go kings is a joke and having you to come to for info is just awesome!

  • http://www.letsgokings.com rajuabju

    This blog must stay alive at all costs. There is no other source of news for Kings fans. We NEED YOU RICH.

  • Mark Nguyen

    Hey Rich,
    You can’t leave to cover the Lakers. If you left the only person left to get our news from is Katz from the other cheesy hockeyboard and I’m pretty sure she just takes your news and copies it on their site and gives some moronic opinions. But in all seriousness it’s a pleasure reading your blog and you’re my #1 source for Kings info.

  • Anonymous

    I had subscribed to the LA Times for 17 years, and dropped the paper when I heard they would no longer be covering the Kings on the road. Once I heard I they couldn’t be bothered to give me indepth coverage of my favorite team, I figured I couldn’t be bothered to give them my money. I just recently found your blog and I actually have a note on my “to do list” to subscribe to the Daily News. I’ve lived in LA my whole life and I had never read that paper — until someone hooked me up with your blog. When I heard you cover the Kings for the Daily News, I started picking up the paper on a regular basis.

    Please, don’t cover the Lakers. Although I’m a season ticket holder to both the Kings and Lakers, Los Angeles is desperately lacking coverage for the Kings! Let the fans know what it will take to keep you covering the Kings. We need you!

  • BobMillersHair

    I am wondering if all of us Rich Hammond fans should send emails to the editors of Los Angeles Daily News and let them know how important it is for them to keep our boy Rich on the Kings beat.

    These are some email addresses I found on dailynews.com.

    *Josh Kleinhaum , Online Editor
    josh.kleinhaum@dailynews.com

    *Michael Lazarus, Managing Editor
    michael.lazarus@dailynews.com

    I am going to email both and let them know my feelings.
    GO KINGS!! and
    Rich Hammond F*#%ING RULES

  • geeblenob

    Rich,
    I hope you enjoy your well-deserved vacation. I hope even more that you continue to run this blog! As many have stated earlier, this site is highly informative (and addictive!) especially concerning the many great interviews as well as the other ‘inside info’ like reports from team scrimmages. The Lombardi interviews are truly top-notch and highly insightful. It would be a huge loss to the Kings community if this fabulous site didn’t continue.

  • Joe

    Rich, I love this site! As a Kings fan starved for any information about the team (since most local news outlets don’t give much coverage), what you supply is fills a huge void.
    Thanks so much and enjoy your vacation.

  • Hasekbowstome

    A note on the whole message board thing:

    I agree that making a general message board probably wouldn’t be the best thing for this site. You don’t want to have to sit there and moderate it and all. However, I think it would work more effectively you made a message board where only you (Rich) could start topics, and instead of doing comments and running discussion/debate here in the links, you could have a thread up on a board for discussion of the news item, instead of the comment system. It would be more conducive to discussion amongst fans, as well allowing those discussions to continue for longer than a day or so.

  • PolarBearOne

    Rich,

    Whomever is the one in charge of the Lakers beat needs to stay there. Tell your bosses that LA Kings fans say “DO NOT TAKE AWAY OUR ONLY PLAUSIBLE LINK TO KINGS COVERAGE IN L.A.!!!” The L.A. media is already SATUARATED with Lakers coverage – from both sports talk radio stations, to national coverage on ESPN, to the jokes of regional FSN cvoerage…West AND Prime Ticket, to the local news stations. Enough is enough!!! It’s not like Kings hockey is soccer – we fans deserve something better and YOUR blog is it. If the chances become stronger that you are made to cover Lakers dramaball, then Kings fans WILL unite to secure your place as the “ONLY HOPE” for a link between fans and team news, OR, we will revolt against the Daily News, as a whole.

    Your blog rules all that is L.A. hockey!!

    Enjoy your vacation.

  • Puck U

    Kobe’s a Punk and screw the Lakers … Rich Hammond belongs to US and the KINGS !!! Long live the KINGS and Rich Hammond’s coverage of them.

  • Kings Fan

    Enjoy your well deserved vacation. Your King’s Free Agent coverage was awesome. Your one on one interview with players and Lombardi are really awesome and insightful. The trust you have with the players and managment is very evident in your work.All that aside.. Your coverage of the kings is now legendary!!!

  • mrwebhead

    Lakers suck… I hope that you will continue to cover the Kings for us long suffering fans… Thanks for everything!

  • JSDSKI

    I read your blog for your writing and your insights and your reporting – no one else’s. We do not need another forum or message board!!! Stay away from that energy sapping world! Do not go there!

    If you get an email or write up you think is deserving of a position and post on your blog – then post it.

    But I read this for your hard won and hard earned knowledge and skill at presentation. Don’t dilute the product.

    It’s cool as it is !!! Karma to ya!!!

  • Randart

    My thoughts on this have been echoed by the guys here so well I can only reiterate…
    1. Have a great Vaction…
    2.Donot leave for that cirque de LA known as the dad blasted snakers!
    3.Just keep doing what you do best and better than all the rest! Keep this blog alive with your reporting and writing skills!

    Thanks Rich and make it clear to your boss Your Kings property…
    Take Care Matey… RT

  • trapper9

    Rich, your vacation is well earned! Enjoy it. Like everyone else says, we desperately want you here. I stopped reading the Times a few years ago and your paper is the only print media I will read. Us King fans have never had the kind of coverage from a reporter in 40 YEARS. We are starved for Kings news whereas we are oversaturated with Laker news. I hope your bosses come to the realization of how much more valuable you would be covering theKings.

  • Hrudey92

    I am with everyone else. Have a nice vacation… and DONT GO TO THE LAKERS. Kobe is bad for you.

  • Joe Grind

    Covering the Kings, covering the Lakers… Isn’t it all moot because big bad Beckham is taking over L.A.?

    All kidding aside, if Rich goes, we go.

  • Jerry

    Rich,

    hope you have a great vacation!!! I’m glad to continue hearing that you are getting outstanding feedback for this blog. Without question, you provide the best /fastest inside information about the kings which we are all dying to read about…looking very forward to reading your next post!!

    thanks again

    Jerry

  • josh

    Don’t go man! :) I agree with the other comments on this board. The site is perfect the way it is in my mind. It’s the straightforward insider info that I love. And the fact that you take our questions directly to management and players. Your info is always current and many times ahead of the game in terms of other sites reporting info…Tell managament that we kings fans need you on our side! :) Thanks for all the owrk you do. Enjoy your vacation. I’ll probably be checking in a few times a day anyways like i ususally do, just in case you decide to post some info….

  • Ron

    I just discovered your blog about 2 week’s ago & have been addicted ever since. Have a great vacation!

  • Dan H.

    Rich,

    Your blog is about the only place in LA to get Kings news on the fly and that’s not rumored but what’s actually happening. I sincerely hope that they keep you on this assignment. It’s great.

    Dan

  • nick

    Please don’t go! you are the best source of inside kings info that there is!

  • Seabass

    As long as your typing, I’m reading. Please don’t cover the Lakers.

  • Gary B

    Great, unique blog, Rich. Your detailed and timely information on the Kings is filling a huge void. As you’ve noticed, although Kings fans are not as numerous as Dodgers or Lakers fans, we are more interested in every detail about them. Your news on them provides much more than the press releases picked up elswhere, if picked up. And, your interviews give us insight on what management and players are thinking, and may do in the future. LA has been waiting 30 years for this type of coverage. I can remember when I used to see Kings trades as a 1 sentence listing under “NHL Transactions” in a rival newspaper. Keep up the great work!!!

  • Mr. Irreverent

    Just say not to LAKERS!!! PLEASE KEEP HAMMOND on the LA KINGS BEAT!!!

  • 5-Hole

    Enjoy your vacation, Rich. Come back refreshed and ready for a long and hopefully very interesting and exciting season!

  • http://juno.com Martin Hoffmann

    Hail Kings Fans!
    Rich, don’t abandon us now!!
    Here is my twist on lineup changes:
    The Kings need to get bigger to beat the Ducks and Sharks, sign Cammy and then trade him for a RWPF. Waive Willsie (-20 +/-). The line up is then:
    Brown-Kopitar-PF
    Frolov-Handzus-Nagy
    Calder-Armstrong-O’Sullivan
    Moulson-Cliche-Zeiler
    Extras: Thornton & Irvanans
    Priessing-Visnovsky
    Johnson-Stuart
    Boyle-Blake
    Extra: Modry

    Let DL & RH sort out the Goalies!!

    The Kings need to go young now to be better later!!

    The Kings should be in the 84-88 point range this season with a shot at the playoffs!!

    What do you think people!!

    So long from Chiang Mai; Thailand, that is!!

    Martin

  • AJ

    don’t know if I can say anything that hasn’t been said already in this ridiculous number of posts dedicated to you =) but you’re the best and I havnet seen this accessibility to management ever in my years of reading Kings media. How can you make it better, I don’t think you need to change a thing. Just keep drilling management, review the games, and get the players to talk. You have the power we don’t, so that’s what we look to you to provide us. I read your blog everyday, I’m sure the numbers are staggering as I know I’m not the only one. You’ve single handedly changed the dynamics of our message boards to revolve around your posts.

    Keep up the good work…

    please :)

  • funky

    Enjoy the much needed vacation Rich. This has become the second page I check each day right after a quick glance at tsn to get an overview on the world of sports. Your updates are timely, accurate, and always reliable. I found the website right after this years draft and I loved it. You seem to have become Yoda to a group of us wayward Kings fans and I can see why your management wants you to cove basketball because of your talent. I am keeping my fingures crossed that you will be back next year covering our Kings as you get insider knowledge, deadly wll timed interviews and keep us up to date daily. Keep up the great work.

  • Quattro

    LOL @ the RH lovefest

    Have a good vacation, Rich.

  • motor701

    This is the only site I check now besides letsgokings.com. Please keep it up. Rich gives us phenomenal and much needed insight into Kings administration. Thank You!!

  • RW

    Ditto everything noted above.

    A 100% accurate salary/term chart, updated as players come and go, would be very valuable to all of us armchair GMs. I think that NHLnumbers is very good, but I often wonder how accurate it is.

    Have a great vacation and keep up the good work.

  • Dave

    Rich,

    Echoing the comments above, please keep doing what you are doing. No need to go all Bulletin Board Style on us!! One LGK.com is plenty!! Your work here is valued and enjoyed, thank you!! Enjoy your well deserved break!!

  • Peter, Norway

    enjoy your break! and please dont dont stop blogging this GREAT site..

    32

  • Peter, Norway

    enjoy your break! and please dont dont stop blogging this GREAT site..

    32

  • Lazarus

    Keep the blog the same Rich, I come to read what you write not the drivel that comes from the majority of people on message boards. I get more insight and inside information from one sentence you type, than from a page full of bbs postings. I check your blog at least twice a day, when I wake up and when I get home from work. Living in Arizona makes it so the only news I can get of my beloved Kings is online and your blog is by far the best and most accurate source for that. Keep up the great work Rich, and enjoy your well earned and much deserved vacation.

  • NMKingsFan

    Can’t say much more than is already said. Great blog Rich, haven’t been to LGK since I found this blog, don’t need we wade through endless drivel to get to the core news and the comments are interesting too! The only thing I could see adding is a game day or morning skate report during the season. Who’s skating well or looking good, who might have an injury but is still playing but slowed down. Little clues like this give us things to watch for when we are watching the game that evening. Enjoy your vacation, we’ll be here waiting for you when you return.

  • Dan

    I hope that you are able to continue with your Los Angeles Kings blog. You have done an outstanding job with your reports! It has kept me glued to your site daily (sometimes even more often). I hope that the Daily News takes notice of the feedback, as i think you have found quite an audience! One thing that has been severely lacking in the past is good coverage of the LA Kings. The local media in the past has mostly given us some AP blurbs and press releases for news. Rarely anything insightful or interesting. The fans have noticed and are loving this rare treat!

    Of course. there have been many other local writers that interview or write articles about the LA Kings, but unfortunately, most of the time the coverage is poor and/or inaccurate (most likely due to the writer’s lack of familiarity with the sport or team). It is refreshing to read articles like yours that have good content and are written by someone who understands what they are writing about.

    This team is gonna be real good very soon and it will be very exciting to follow them this closely as they begin their ascent.

    Thank you for your efforts and insight and enjoy your time off.

  • Mitch

    Enjoy you blog and the Kings updates. Sure hope you don’t get stuck in Lakerville.

  • Fred

    Great job Rich!

  • Andy MacMullen

    Thanks for all of your work.
    Enjoy your vacation.

    Note to your managers/editors/publishers:
    Rich Hammond is a valuable asset to you paper and to hockey fans in this city. Having Rich gives your paper a big competitive advantage over the Times in so far a Hockey coverage is concerned. The Times has four hockey writers on their staff. Elloit,Dillman, White and Stephens for the ducks. What I have gained from Rich regarding the Kings, easly supasses anything their writers have given this summer. The Times has blogs attached their web site. Keeping Rich on this blog and attaching it the the Daily News Webite will make the Daily News my first choice for news. Judging by the number of responses on this thread the Daily News has a opportunity to be a leader in Kings coverage in LA. If this year pans out for the Kings ….

  • fulton

    Hi Rich. Hope you have a nice vacation.

    Like everyone, I truly appreciate the attention to detail and the frequency of your blog updates. Yours is the single source that I turn to for information on the Kings and I am hopeful that the format remains the same.

    Take care. – Don

  • Bluebomber

    Rich,
    What makes your blog both welcome and unique is your connection to DL and others. Adding bells and whistles is fine as long as it doesn’t take away from what you already do. We can go elsewhere for message boards and the like. Echoing the sentiments of others, switching your assignment would be an enormous loss for LA Kings fans. What can we as fans do to prevent that from happening? Keep up the good work and enjoy your vacation.

    Bluebomber

  • Hec27

    Hey Rich, Enjoy your vacation. It’s well deserved as you are a hard worker. Never have I had such a great source of information when it comes to the Kings. I really hope you don’t get stuck doing the Lakers when you get back. This Site is the first and last site I visit everyday, and it is all because you provide such great insight.
    Thanks.

  • Derek

    I will echo everyone else here by saying this site is the best thing to happen to use Kings fans ever. The information you are privy to and, in turn, pass on to us is addictive. It is our information crack! Keep this site centered around that information and it will continue to grow.

    Please let The Daily News folks know that as important as this site is, so is the person posting to it. It is one thing to have this site for ‘insider’, journalist exclusive information. But it is another to have a journalist with a good understanding of hockey to post to it. Rich has that and that is a good part of why this works. They can’t simply throw another journalist at the Kings and expect him/her to provide what Rich does here. We Kings fans know all too well how hockey illiterate a number of the local sports writers are.

    Here’s to hoping you come back to us, Rich!

    Thanks,
    Derek

  • JB

    As it’s already been said this is a great site so keep up the work. Here are my ideas but as I said the site is great and I don’t know what kind of support or resources you have from your paper but here are things that would be cool.

    1. Podcast- When season starts how about a weekly/bi-weekly 15-20 minute audio or video podcast discussing recent/upcoming games, news and maybe interviews w/ Kings or opposing players.
    2 Photos – doesn’t need to be pulitzer quality but when you did player interviews a nice touch would be a little thumbnail photo next to the post.

    Enjoy the time off and I hope your paper lets you keep up the great work as the season starts.

  • .308 M1A

    Oh man, I bet you never even read this far down, but hopfully mgt does!!!

    First of all, Rich, as a Kings lifer, I am sure you still do not fully understand the impact you are having on Kings fans with your reporting. What you edit out of posts is more than what other sports media outlets give us in a year!!!! Your work for us is consumate. Period.

    Secondly, I think it would be incumbent upon Daily News mgt to understand exactly what is they’ve got here: A qualified, responsible, articulate, and far superior reporter covering something partially unnoticed, yet followed religiously by a select group of sports fans, not only in SoCal, but across the country.

    Your management should recognize that you are a monopoly of sorts, so to speak, that covers the LA Kings. It may not be the biggest “market” out there, but you’ve got it captivated. No other media outlet within 500 miles of here can say the same.

    RMFH, you do excellent work. You are the closest thing we have to being on the ice, in the room, part of the team that we are geeks over. The DN needs to keep you in this slot. We need you in this role.

    Thanks for what you do! Keep it up! And we all look forward to having YOU around this season covering the Kings!!!!

  • Chuck Wagon

    Rich the blog rules. You’re boss would be a fool to move you to Laker coverage.

  • JK

    First time, long time, I had to leave a comment here. Please, please, stay with Kings. This is the best site that covers Kings inside info ever. Thanks Rich!

  • kngz4la

    A note to Daily News Management:
    Rich and his blog have been a godsend to us Kings fans, not only in S.Cal, but all over the world as we have read posts from Europe, Canada and other areas. Please allow Rich to continue his outstanding work this season and for many seasons to come.

  • Dan

    I’m going to take a different approach and tell you how I really feel . . . I am really pissed off that you’re on vacation. I wait for your posts everyday. What am I supposed to do now?

    In addition to being on vacation, you tell us that the best sports coverage that has EVER happened to Kings hockey might must disappear. Just like that? NO WAY MAN. You can’t go.

    I’ve already written to the managing editor and the online editor at the Daily News. I recommend that everyone else do the same. Their email addresses were provided by another poster above.

    Rich, think about it. If you leave to cover the Lakers, you’ll be just another sports writer covering basketball. Talk about a boring life. If you stay, you will become an LA legend.

    As for the “brass” that gets to make the decision about whether this site and you stay with us, please do the right thing and keep this site going. And for Christ’s sake, give Rich a RAISE.

    That’s all. Can’t wait ’till you come back Rich.

  • Richard

    You and Vic Ketchman of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ website are the only two sports writers whose columns/blogs I look forward to every day. Hopefully the voices of the people will be heard and keep you here… at least, once a well-earned vacation is thoroughly enjoyed. :)

  • Hec27

    Hey Rich. I’m not sure how everyone else who reads this blog feels, but I DO NOT want another “Fred Rogan” type of person writing this blog. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!!!!!!
    I’ll kill myself(not really) if we get another Fred Rogan doing this blog.

    That guy is as good a sports reporter as Dan Clouiter was good at stopping pucks last year.

    I’ve completely stopped reading The Times for their lack of Kings coverage, and I’ve completely stopped watching the Channel 4 news for thir lack of quality sports reporters.

    What I’m trying to say is that your as great a reporter as Wayne Gretzky was a hockey player,and have made just as big of an impact on us fans.

    If your bosses have ANY compassion, they’ll understand just how much YOU and YOUR coverage of THE KINGS is greatly appreciated and desperately needed.

    Enjoy your vacation!

  • Roger

    Rich,
    Enjoy your well-deserved time off. Remind your boss that for every comment you receive, there are probably 10 people who do not reply but feel the same way as all of us. Keep up the incredible work, we appreciate it.

  • Mike

    Rich,

    If you go anywhere, we will take hostages!

  • GregB

    While you are e-mailing, be sure to include Kevin Modesti as he is the overall sports editor for the the LA Newspaper Group.

    heymodesti@aol.com

    Kevin is a good guy who loves another non-Top 5 sport (horse racing) who does listen to the readers.

  • gkingsg

    Thank you so much for the hard work you put in!

    Enjoy the vacation and hurry back. Hopefully you stay here with us but if it is a better opportunity, I wish you all the best!

  • Tkn

    Thanks, Rich, for always managing to give us the REAL inside scoop! If it wasn’t for your generous insights into the going-ons of the Kings, I would’ve given up on this team a long time ago. Thanks for making all us fans realize that The LA Kings are truly worthy of our loyalty!

  • gnik gnack

    Thanks for everything Rich, hope you stick to the NHL beat.

  • Jeff Spicoli

    What Jefferson was saying was, Hey! You know, we left this England place ’cause it was bogus; so if we don’t get some cool rules ourselves – pronto – we’ll just be bogus too! Get it?

  • mike

    thanks rich for everything. enjoy your vacation. there hasn’t been many good things happening to the kings, here’s my last of the past year.

    1. Hammonds
    2. Kopitar
    3. Lombardi
    4. J. Johnson
    5. Hammonds

  • Brian

    Rich,

    I don’t have much to add given all the great things that have already been said. However, if you really want to drive traffic to this blog, may I suggest 4 simple words: “Rich Hammond’s Ice Girls”.

  • Greg

    Going to miss your blog here. No, please don’t change a thing. It’s perfect.

  • Trapper9

    Yeah, I’m posting agian. I will post everyday if I have to. This way your bosses can see we are here every day. EVEN WHEN WE KNOW YOUR ON VACATION! Oh and what Mike said about hostages, he may not be kidding, better not cahnce it I say.

  • Cliff

    Thanks for all you report on the Kings. I live in rural New Mexico (an LA transplant). It’s hard to keep track of the Kings. You blog really does a great job of keeping me in touch. Have a great vacation and I hope you continue to cover the Kings.

  • Gavin

    I wouldn’t usually post here, but I figure now is as good a time as ever to express support. This blog is freaking amazing. I always knew the Kings were under covered, but the extent to which the information was (apparently) available and just not reported is astounding. Rich, you do a great job, and I may actually cry if this blog ceases to exist.

  • mrkuyukot

    Like I’ve said before, we need you. Don’t go anywhere but vacations.

  • jc_9

    NOOOOO!!!!

    I hope they reconsider. We haven’t had decent coverage for the Kings in a long time. We finally get Rich and his great interviews and insight and now it can all be taken away?

    There is no other place to get this kind of coverage of the Kings. Please don’t take it away.

    Rich, you do a great job. I guess that’s why they want you covering the lakers. Thank you for all of your work.

  • mark scofield

    I’m retired in Philippines and love your blog,only info i get about my beloved Kings,keep it up!

  • BobMillersHair

    Statement from DL in an article on tsn.ca/nhl regarding Kings goaltending.

    Canadian Press
    7/16/2007 4:50:51 PM

    The Los Angeles Kings had serious interest in star goalie Tomas Vokoun before he was dealt from Nashville to Florida last month and now it appears they’ll stick with what they’ve got instead of dipping into free agency.

    Jason Labarbera, 27, will likely get the chance to run with it after being stuck in the AHL last season due to CBA issues. Oft-injured Dan Cloutier will complete the tandem, at least to start the season.

    Kings GM Dean Lombardi knows what’s left on the free-agent front but wants to see what Labarbera can do.

    “I’m better off giving Jason a well-deserved shot that he so richly deserves after the year he had last year and the way he conducted himself,” Lombardi told CP. “And then see if Cloutier can bounce back.”

    Link:
    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=213761&hubname=nhl

    We already miss you Rich!!
    Get back soon.

  • Dan

    Just imagine how cool this blog would be if Rich could get Foxy, Bob Miller, Nick Nickson, and/or Daryl Evans as guest bloggers.

    Live chat with Dean Lombardi anyone?

    The possibilities are pretty awesome.

  • Mike

    The only real thing this blog is missing is any audio/video interviews. Besides that, it’s near perfection.

    Also, one thing I like Rich, is when you’re honest. You can be candid at times and it’s always great to see that. I mean, it IS your blog. I love the inside scoops, the insider information but I enjoy getting your take on things the most.

  • Zacko

    Really, there is already enough coverage of the Lakers that the world doesn’t need another Lakers blog(although yours is good). For Kings fans, there isn’t much of an in-depth outlet other than here. You definitely are the big fish when it comes to Kings coverage.

  • Albsterina

    I don’t have much anything new or novel to say that hasn’t been expressed by others already, but I wanted to thank you again for this blog. It’s insightful, it’s wonderful, it’s all those things.

    It’s the coverage that a major sport (technically, at least) should warrant in a quality newspaper. Hopefully, those in charge will realize the positive impact that your coverage of the Kings is generating not only for this website, but for the newspaper as a whole.

    I, for one, have been turned off by another competing newspaper’s constant cutting of Kings’ coverage and it’s latest decision to insert ads on its front page. Meanwhile, my discovery of this site, wonderfully well-written and informative, has created a positive image of the D.N. If you were to cover another beat, it’d be a shame for all the budding goodwill that’s been created by you!

    Stay… do it for your readers!

  • Daniel

    Step away from the hero-worship, guys. Rich is just doing his job (very well, of course.)
    Anyway, I think we are all competent enough to serve as a “bridge” until Rich comes back from va-ca. Here is my submission, from TSN:
    “The Los Angeles Kings had serious interest in star goalie Tomas Vokoun before he was dealt from Nashville to Florida last month and now it appears they’ll stick with what they’ve got instead of dipping into free agency.

    Jason Labarbera, 27, will likely get the chance to run with it after being stuck in the AHL last season due to CBA issues. Oft-injured Dan Cloutier will complete the tandem, at least to start the season.

    Kings GM Dean Lombardi knows what’s left on the free-agent front but wants to see what Labarbera can do.

    “I’m better off giving Jason a well-deserved shot that he so richly deserves after the year he had last year and the way he conducted himself,” Lombardi told CP. “And then see if Cloutier can bounce back.””
    http://tsn.ca/nhl/news_story/?ID=213761&hubname=

  • pinheadmike

    Rich-

    I know everyone has said it over and over. It is true that you have really given us the Kings fan more than we could ever have expected in information about our favorite team. I am posting here for the 1st time to help keep doing what we all love you doing. Covering the Kings. Thanks so much for all the hard work.

  • Encino-John

    Rich,

    I hope your management is realizing that Kings fans are the most passionate of any fans in LA.

    For me, this blog represents getting the “real” news of what’s happening with the Kings, without having to sift through thread upon thread of outrageous trade proposals, long-winded diatribes, etc. as some other websites provide.

    Hopefully, your management will see the value in keeping you covering the Kings. But if not, we’ll survive. As Kings fans, we’ve been through far worse….

  • Dee

    Rich-hope you are enjoying your vacation and all the worship from my fellow Kings addicts who must read this blog as religiously as I do. As a long-time Kings fan, I am used to being disappointed year after year, but now that things are looking up and we actually seem to be on the right path to respectability, PLEASE don’t let the Daily News powers-that-be take your blog away from us in favor of the Lakers! Living in LA it is already All-Lakers-all-the-time, it would be a huge blow to have this incredible insight into the day-to-day operations and thoughts of the Kings players and management wrested away from us just like that. You are not only knowledgeable about the sport but seem to really enjoy your interactions with the team, and I look forward to reading your insight every day. So Just Say NO! to the Lakers.

  • Aaron DeVandry

    Thanks, Rich, for an amazing blog.

    This place is jumping, and it’s only the offseason. Your boss would be wise to keep you here with us and the Kings.

  • trapper9

    Daniel– “step away from the hero worship”??
    You do know these are King fans right? JMFJ, Kopitarians et al.
    You can’t stop this train, just ride it.

  • Travis

    Rich, you rock.

    Chat room = yes
    Message board = you start the topic and we will respond. that will keep moderating to a minimum.

  • Anonymous

    This is ther best hockey blog in Southern California, no question.

    You absolutely rock, Rich.

    Here’s to hoping this blog/site just grows and grows and grows…

  • triplcrown

    Oops. That last post was me.

  • Jon

    Hey Rich,
    have a great well deserved vacation. In my short pain filled 20 years of life as a Kings fan this site lets me know, where there is sh*t flowers are bound to grow. Also thanks to you and this blog im not really interested in the Dodgers this season(thier getting thier asses handed to them by the mets right now anyway). F*ck the lakers they dont need any more time in the spotlight its time for the Kings the shine.

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