Forum answers II

The next set of answers to today’s questions…

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Question: at the trade deadline which Kings players and prospects were on other teams wish list. I would like to know what players other teams wanted.

Answer: Michal Handzus, Alexander Frolov and Sean O’Donnell generated the most interest among players, and I’m sure pretty much all of the prospects came into discussion at some point. Colorado wanted a package that included Jonathan Bernier and Colten Teubert as part of any discussion for Ryan Smyth, so that didn’t get very far.

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Question: not to be obnoxious( hard for me, I know), but what’s the status of the Daily News? If the economy gets any worse, I don’t see the paper lasting much longer (If the Rocky Mountain News folds after 149 years…). I told Luc and the boys last night that “Rich Hammond is one of the best things to happen to the Kings”, and I’m afraid if the paper does fold, you’ll have to find a job elsewhere and we lose your passion, commitment and enthusiasm.

Answer: One of the first rules of journalism is, “Nobody wants to hear a sportswriter complain,” so I’ll encourage everyone to just skip this answer. But I do appreciate the question. The truth is that the Daily News is not in good shape, and we’re far from alone there. Just when you think they can’t cut any more resources, they cut more resources. I don’t know what the long-term status is, and I try not to worry about it. If, one day, they tell me not to come to work anymore, I’ll try to find another job. It won’t be as fun and rewarding as this one, but that’s life. It’s a very tenuous situation right now for everyone, but I appreciate the support.

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Question: Is there any realistic chance of Doughty getting the Calder? Do the Kings do any campaigning for him? Doesn’t Brown owe him a commercial (since Doughty’s got him the all-star spot)?

Answer: Good point. Brown definitely owes him one. But realistically, there isn’t any “campaigning” that goes on. The All-Star Game is a fan-balloting thing, whereas the Calder is voted on by dummies such as myself. NBA teams do “campaign” for their players, but I’ve never seen it done in the NHL really. It’s going to be tough for Doughty to get the Calder because a) he’s a defenseman and b) he plays in the West. The biggest thing he has going for him (other than his outstanding play) is that he’s adored in Canada because of his national-team success.

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Question: Is there any protocol in the NHL for visiting teams playing the Ducks before Kings or Kings before Ducks. It seems like we usually have to play teams visiting SoCal before the Ducks which obviously gives them an advantage.

Answer: Actually, I went through the schedules, and in terms of back-to-back games, the Kings have had the clear advantage this season. Ten times this season, teams have had to do the Anaheim-to-L.A. back-to-back games. Only six teams have had to do the L.A.-to-Anaheim back-to-backs. I don’t really count Vancouver playing in L.A. on Monday and in Anaheim on Wednesday, because there’s a day off. I think, in general, the league tries to balance it as much as possible.

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Questions: 1.D.Lombardi tals a lot about reserve list, when this list will be full? Or is this ongoing process? 2.Does Kings players watch Ducks and other hockey clubs games when they have time ?

Answers: 1) Well, it’s always going to be an ongoing process. Players leave the organization and others come in. I think that Lombardi’s goal, when he got here, was to stock the reserve list with prospects. He pointed to Manchester and how, when he arrived, the Monarchs were a (relatively) old team. Now you’re seeing a lot more younger prospects at that level, and that’s a sign that the reserve list is deeper. I’m sure, if you ask him, he will tell you that it’s never exactly where he wants it to be. 2) Some guys are more of “hockey junkies” than others. I’m not sure how many guys sit down and watch complete games every night, but certainly they’re all aware of what’s going on in the league.

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Question: Is Green ok from last night?

Answer: Yes. Well, relatively. As OK as someone who took a puck to the head can be. It’s not the first time he’s been hit in the head/face this season. It’s just the bloodiest.

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Question: Why do the linesman feel it is necessary to throw a player out of the circle every other face-off?

Answer: I’ve never given it that much thought, to be honest with you. But, on the flip side, if you’re a linesman you’re probably saying, “We wouldn’t have this problem if the players didn’t try to cheat on the draw so much…”

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Question: at the end of January you wrote stating that you felt that Lewis was ahead of Purcell on the depth chart? Now that Clearly Purcell is ahead of everyone on the depth chart of prospects. where do you feel Lewis and Boyle are now? Are we resigning Purcell and Boyle and for how long?

Answer: Well, I don’t particularly remember writing that, but at the time he probably was ahead of Purcell, at least in terms of the perception of team management. Remember, though, that you’re talking about a winger (Purcell) vs. a guy who primarily plays center (Lewis), so they’re kind of on different paths. But yes, it’s fair to say that, at the moment, Purcell’s NHL future is a little clearer than Lewis’, and Lewis’ is clearer than Boyle. Purcell and Boyle are both restricted free agents this summer. I don’t think there’s any chance they will cut Purcell free, but Boyle? That will be interesting to watch.

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Question: What incentives do you have to post as many things as you do?

Answer: Ummm…I don’t really have any incentives, to be completely honest, in terms of money or fame. I suppose it makes me a somewhat more valuable employee. For the most part, I do it because I enjoy doing it, and because there’s a lot of interest and people seem to enjoy it. So I’ll keep doing it for as long as I can.

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  • Scott

    Hey Rich,

    Where do you see Armstrong in the future? I understand he is a UFA, and with the influx of new talent that could possibly push for a spot, I don’t know if the Kings will resign him (Or even if they should).

    It’s a shame because Army is a great character guy, always nice to fans, and seems to bring alot of positive energy to the team in general.

    Perhaps he would fit well somewhere as a Color Commentator or something. What are your thoughts?

  • Anonymous

    “Actually, I went through the schedules, and in terms of back-to-back games, the Kings have had the clear advantage this season. Ten times this season, teams have had to do the Anaheim-to-L.A. back-to-back games. Only six teams have had to do the L.A.-to-Anaheim back-to-backs. I don’t really count Vancouver playing in L.A. on Monday and in Anaheim on Wednesday, because there’s a day off. I think, in general, the league tries to balance it as much as possible.”

    Thanks for the update! That’s why you’re the writer and I’m the lazy fan. Thanks Rich, you continue to be an amazing asset to Kings fans.

  • Quisp

    Several big games tonight for the Kings’ playoff push. It’s a potentially big night because three elite teams are playing our rivals.

    EDM/MTL
    BOS/CBJ
    WSH/NSH
    SJS/MIN
    DAL/STL

    Go Habs, Bruins, Caps and Sharks!

    And, re DAL/STL, go regulation!

  • typicaljs

    I’m sure there will be more of these for you to read, most likely of a higher quality, but thank you Rich. I have to check this page at least like 10 times a day, and more often than not there is some interesting read. I don’t know what I would do during boring lectures without you.

    Oh, and if the Daily News goes under and this blog stops I think us King’s fans will have to revolt or find some way to keep this going. At the very least the kings should add you to their payroll.

  • GoKings09

    Rich,

    Thanks for all you do and taking the time to answer our crazy questions. I really appreciate it and love hearing all the behind the scenes info like the ping pong tournament and such.

    My question is: Earlier in this post you mentioned the price for Ryan Smyth started with Bernier and Teubert. I was wondering from that 1)What other players did Lombardi inquire about and what were the prices for those players or the main propspects they asked for? 2)Who were any of the Kings prospects or players that were asked about and what were their prices that Lombardi asked other teams for?

  • Anonyma

    Re: the Armstrong question above

    Someone asked him what his future plans were during the player Q&A they had following last night’s game and his response was along the line of how he loves playing in LA and would love to play until he’s 40. I don’t remember the exact wording because it ended way past my typical bedtime and I was tired. Perhaps someone else can remember the rest of his comments.

    FYI that was the first time I remember the Kings putting on a player Q&A and I thought it was nice of them to do considering it was pretty late. In attendance were Stoll, Quincey, Handzus, O’Donnell, Armstrong, Williams, and Kopitar. Many of the fans’ questions were inane (i.e. which of you are eligible bachelors? who do you room with on the road?) but the players were easy-going and polite. I haven’t checked the Kings’ site to see if they’ve posted any video of the event. As a PR move, it was nice.

  • Tim

    Rich, have you heard anything from the Dean or Murray about Westgarth? He seems to get around the ice significantly better than Raitis and to use his body more effectively in hits as well. (Caveat, we’re clearly talking a really small sample set of his play)

    Also, I’m curious about Richardson. I’m surprised he is so often one of the healthy scratches because he seems to get around the ice very well during games, always one of the first guys in on the forecheck and takes the body very well. Wondering why he is often the healthy scratch. (A guess, Ivanans or Westgarth get in for toughness, Harrold because he can play D on PP too, Army because he’s a center?)

  • nykingfan

    Great job as always Rich.
    I hope things work out where you are, but if it doesn’t, I would hope the Kings find a spot for you in the organization. You’re definitely an asset that any smart organization would covet.
    Keep up the great work and thanks.

  • Brian M

    Rich, Once again thanks for all you do. When I started following the Kings I would have to wait for the Hockey News or local paper to be delivered to get the latest on the Kings. (By then it wasn’t quite up to date). On draft day I would call the local paper for the Kings picks and depending on who answered the phone and if they were a hockey fan determined what info I got if any at all. Since I didn’t grow up with the internet I’m still in awe that we can get this information so quickly and you do an outstanding job which I wouldn’t have dreamed of back when I rooted for cowboy flett, the triple crown line etc etc. Thanks again. Brian

  • sparky

    Rich,

    No questions here. Just a huge thanks for all you do… You really are the MAN!!!!

  • steven Jay

    If Colorado wanted Bernier and Teubert, there is a reason Smyth was NOT moved at the deadline. If Bernier and Teubert were sent to the aVS, then Statsny better be heading west.

  • Dave W

    Question: Is there any protocol in the NHL for visiting teams playing the Ducks before Kings or Kings before Ducks. It seems like we usually have to play teams visiting SoCal before the Ducks which obviously gives them an advantage.

    When the Ducks came into the league I remember hearing or reading somewhere that there was a deal that the Kings would get the visiting team second the majority of the time for a certain number of years. It was part of the deal that allowed the sharing of the Kings market.

    I wish I could remember the source for that.

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