Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Avery v. Rangers: Part 2

And the smackdown continues!!

According to another
NY Post article Rangers management also included the following statement about Avery’s detrimental behavior in their arbitration brief:

"Avery is not a mature player. He plays, at times, like an individual rather than a member of a team. This is sometimes referred to as an inability to see the ice, and in Avery's case this seems to fit with his overall approach to the game."

Avery was directly corresponding with the NY Post (was he the one who leaked the contents of the brief?? Hmm…other fans think so) and apparently e-mailed them with the following response:

"I have no idea what to say. I don't know what this was about. I'm shocked."

Yeah, he’s shocked, because now he’s not sure how he’ll be able to afford the +$10 million wedding that he was planning with Elisha Cuthbert was planning. And for all the male fans out there, Elisha Cuthbert cannot be considered hot if she has no problem adventuring out in public looking like a bag lady, albeit a very expensive bag lady. One horrid public appearance is enough to knock her off the Hot List.

Back to the Avery-Rangers Deathmatch:
Wow, the Rangers sure know how to come out fighting. I bet the game plan was something like this:
Let’s overpay for Gomez and Drury, make Shanny look poor, and beat down Avery with a stick till he’s begging us to take him back. Or even better, if we beat him up enough maybe he’ll pay us to bring him back.

I’ll admit today that the Rangers are correct in stating that Avery is an immature player who, more often than not, thinks about himself as opposed to the team. However, I still think he can be an effective player for the right team and management. Hold the leash too tight and he’ll go ape-shit, but don’t even tie him to a leash and he’ll start thinking he’s God’s gift to a hockey club.

If the arbitration hearing takes past seasons into account, mainly the seasons he was with the Kings, then Avery is fucked. But if they only look at his track record with the Rangers, then he might win his arbitration hearing because he wasn’t nearly as detrimental to the Rangers as he was to the Kings.

Good Luck Aves, I’m rooting for you! (But only because I want to see the Rangers get crapped on.)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Detriment! What?!

I’ve never read the New York Post before but based on its website it looks about as reliable as the National Enquirer. Nevertheless, I ventured over to the (news)paper to read the full article in which Slats calls Avery a ‘Detriment’ to the Rangers. Avery’s arbitration hearing is scheduled for today so it’ll be interesting to find out the results of the hearing and how each party responds. But let’s get back to the main story at hand.

According to the NY Post, Avery found out today that “management called him ‘a reasonably effective player as well as a detriment to the team,’ in the team's salary arbitration brief”. OUCH! BURN! NOT FAIR! WAAAAA! (ok, the last two were my impersonation of Avery.) In response to those unfair, harsh words, Avery stated:

“It's hard not to take something like that personally and not to be emotional about it. I know this is part of the business, I know this is part of the process, but it's extremely disappointing to read something like that coming from Slats [GM Glen Sather] and not to be offended by it. They talk about me taking, 'unnecessary penalties,' and make a lot of references about me that I don't want to go into but that I don't think are fair. I certainly don't think I was a detriment to the team. At the end of the season, my hope was to sign a long-term deal. I would have loved that. . . . But that never became a legitimate possibility. It became obvious pretty quickly that I was going to wind up going to arbitration. That's OK, I understand the situation with the cap and I understand that this is a business, but not only aren't we anywhere close, they've decided to really go after me in this brief. The arbitration hasn't changed my opinion at all about wanting to be a Ranger and being excited about this season. I'm really high on the team. I just wish Slats hadn't said these things about me. That's hard to take."

I’m not sure how I feel about Avery being called a “detriment” to the Rangers. Honestly, he was waaaaaaaaay worse during the ’05-’06 season with the Kings. Talk about bad penalties, turtle-shelling instead of fighting, and being an all-around douchebag. But never did management ever call him a “detriment”. Management did bar him from playing with the team towards the end of the season and its successors (DL and co.) put him “on a tight leash”, but never did they outright talk shit about him. And seriously, from what I read, Avery seemed to be the right player at the right time for the Rangers: the one who sparked something with the team. Hell, NBC even had him on the intermission show to talk about how effective he was for the Rangers during the playoffs. I can’t say that those observations are in fact what was happening, but that was the impression I got from a bunch of articles and analysts. Does anyone who actually watched Rangers games towards the end of the season have anything to say about his contribution to the team? I’d love to hear from a fan’s perspective rather than a journalist/analyst.

If the Rangers don’t sign him, look for Edmonton to pounce all over him.

Happy Monday!

How did I miss this? I’m not sure how I managed to miss the news of the New Jersey Devils taking Noah Clark off the Kings’ shoulders. Apparently it was mashed in the news of 5 other signings by the Devils, which may be why Clark’s signing did not garner as much attention. This almost makes Zeiler’s re-signing with the Kings bearable.

I realize it might not be such a great thing for me to slam Kings’ players but I don’t think Clark had much future with the Kings. For whatever reason(s) I just did not see the contribution from him that needed to be there for him to be an effective player on the Kings’ roster, which is why
this article misleads its readers by stating that Clark split 3 of his 4 seasons between the AHL and NHL. While Clark was, in fact, called up to play in the NHL, over three seasons he only played in 20 games with the Kings, including 5 during the ’05-’06 campaign when players were dropping like flies due to injuries.

Clarke has been a very solid and consistent player throughout college and in the AHL so hopefully he can continue his strong play with the New Jersey’s farm team. Additionally, despite all the smack I lay on Clarke, I do wish him the best and hopefully he’ll be able to find his niche within the Devils’ roster and be able to average more than 7 games/season in the NHL. You never know how a player will take to a trade and a lot of times it seems that a player who has struggled with one organization will flourish with another. It would be great to see a California native do well in the NHL and with that, I bid Clarke good-bye and wish him nothing but success with the Devils.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Kings Crew

So far, it does not appear that the LA Kings will have Ice Girls. Thank God! Instead, the Kings will continue to have a Kings Crew. The Kings Crew appears to be comprised of a coed group of 20-somethings that run around the aisles of Staples Center in attempt to pump up the crowd. They also run the intermission on-ice activities, such as sumo wrestling and bubble (or, rather what resembles a hamster wheel) races.

On Saturday August 18th, at 10am, open auditions will be held for the '07-'08 Kings Crew. There is a
flyer announcement but not much additional information is provided. If you want more information or need to RSVP you can send an email to the address that is provided on the flyer. I remember last year seeing more information about the Kings Crew, but can't quite recall any specifics.

While I think it would be a fun experience to be part of the Kings Crew, I think I would only enjoy it for about one period before I realize that the Kings are losing 3-nil and no, I do not feel like jumping up and down in a feeble attempt to rejuvenate the crowd. And if the Kings were winning, I would not want to be preoccupied with making sure I'm placed at the correct aisle to shoot off t-shirts and what not. I also don't think I have enough energy to work 9 hours, suffer while driving through 2 hours of traffic, watch 3 hours of a hockey game (and being forced to be on my feet for a certain amount of time) and then get less than 5 hours of sleep before I get to trek off to work the next morning. Maybe if I was still in college (in the LA area) or I worked closer to Staples Center I would audition for the Kings crew. But alas, I am now a 25-year old who would probably feel too old being a part of the Kings Crew. I'll take my seat in Staples Center and cheer whenever the hell I feel like it.

Friday, July 27, 2007

au revoir, DT!

After 2 weeks of silence, the LA Times finally has a new article about the Kings. I'm not really sure why I torture myself by checking the website daily for new articles when only once in a blue moon do they have anything worth reading that I can't find anywhere else. I guess it's just part of my morning routine when I get to work and I just can't seem to shrug off the fix even if it isn't satisfying.

Anyway, once again,
the article was completely worthless and it was written by TWO writers! Seriusly LAT? It took two writers to come up with 6 short paragraphs explaining Dave Taylor's impending departure from the Kings organization? Gee folks, I already thought he was a goner. Well, ok, to be honest, I knew he was still with the organization in some capacity but figured he was just given a title so that he could have a business card and claim that he's still with the team that he started with. Alright, I realize I'm being a little harsh to a guy who provided Kings fans with much joy while he was a player. However, while I realize he can't take the blame for everything bad that has happened while he was GM, I think his performance in the front office was sub-par and I can't say that I was sad to see him demoted a couple seasons ago.

According to the article, it is expected that the Dallas Stars will hire Dave Taylor for a front-office position. And that is the only news that was included in the article. "Font-office capacity": that's specific, just like his last position! I'm sure he'll do an exceptional job.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Cammy my dear...

With one week left till Cammy's arbitration hearing with the Kings, PCV caught up to him and forced him to cooperate with a completely unprofessional interview about his relationship with current and former teammates and the organization's personnel.

PCV: Hey there, Cammy!
MC: ugh...hey.
PCV: do you remember almost running me over about a year ago?
MC: what? no. I have a stellar driving record I would never have done such a thing. How dare you accuse me of such blasphemy! If you don't stop making false accusations, I'm going to have to-
PCV: [cuts him off] OK! Someone's testy!...I take it you're a bit annoyed that the arbitration hearing is still on?
MC: Arbitration? No, I have tee time in T minus 2 hours and I still have to get into my golf gear and strectch so that I don't pull a hammy.
PCV: Oh I see. That would be most unfortunate if Cammy pulled a hammy. tee hee hee! Sorry, ok, first question: Looking back on the last season, which player were you the saddest to see either traded away or not re-signed?
MC: For the team's sake I would say Matty [Norstrom], because of the leadership and presence that he brought to the team. However, personally, I was most upset and saddened to see [Sean] Avery traded to the Rangers.
PCV: Oh My God! Me too!!! I've been saying all along that he's someone you want on your team but never want on the opposition. I have the softest, tiniest spot in my heart reserved my Aves.
MC: Yeah, that's true. But we have a lot of similarities and we were really tight off the ice. He was my wingman and it's tough having to train a newbie that doesn't have the connections and moves that Aves has.
PCV: Wingman? Connections and moves? I'm not following...
MC: For one thing, we're about the same age and size. But Aves is real tough and would always have my back. We also both have the amazing looks that make most guys go gay for us, but thankfully we could ward them off by hanging around all the beautiful, fine A-list female hotties.
PCV: Let me guess: Jessica Alba? I hear she's popular with the male fanbase.
MC: I think we may have been at the same parties. But I was talking about the usual A-Lister partygoers like that chick from The OC-
PCV: [quickly cuts him off again] don't call it that
MC: and of course, the ever fabulous, Elisha Cuthbert, Sean's girlfriend. Oh wait, fiancee! Way to go bro! Gotta lock that shit up!
[long pause]
PCV: I'm sorry, wait. Did you just use "Elisha Cuthbert" and "A-Lister" in the same sentence?
MC: yeah, what's the problem?
PCV: [looks incredibly confused and slightly frightened] There's no problem. I just didn't think it was humanly possible to use those terms in the same sentence. I guess I had just assumed that there was a Taboo Curse put on certain names that when you used them in the same sentence as "A-List", or any such variation, that an angry mob would appear out of thin air and arrest for you direspecting the "A-List" culture and honor. Oh geez, I think I'm getting light-headed...give me a sec.
[long awkward pause]
PCV: I'm sorry, but I don't think I can continue this interview.
MC: Why? Did I say something?
PCV: Yes, you did. I feel sick to my stomach. Have fun at arbitration. Let's do this again once we know whether or not you'll still be in a Kings jersey.
MC: [looks taken aback] ok, bye.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Protein Sports Drink

At my local gym a new sports drink was handed out. Since I didn't have my Nalgene with me I gladly accepted the free drink, Accelerade. The label is busy, cluttered with tons of information about the drink and why it's so different from normal sports drinks. The first thing that caught my eye was that it contained protein. It was advertised as consisting of 4 parts carbohydrates to 1 part protein. When I was younger and played soccer I was big fan of Gatorade because I really felt that it rehydrated me and gave me an extra sugar boost that water just didn't accomplish. Now that I am occassional treadmill runner I don't feel the need to pay for Gatorade or Powerade when I can drink for free. Therefore, I didn't care one bit that I was drinking something with protein in it. However, what did catch my eye, just before I ended my warm-up walk, was a fine print warning on the side: "Allergen Information: Contains milk".

WHAT?! Milk in a sports drink?

I quickly scanned the ingredients and noticed that it contains "whey protein isolate (from milk)". I'm not quite sure what that means, but my best guess is that it is some sort of powder that you obtain from milk. It also contains lactic acid. As I kept drinking Accelerade I noticed that it had some weird, but yet familiar, aftertaste. What was that sort of powdery, chalky taste?

It took me almost an hour to finally figure out what it tasted like: Gatorade +

Those that have been fortunate enough to have tasted the amazingness of Calpis know what I mean. Calpis is a Japanese uncarbonated soft drink. I grew up with it and remember it coming in a tall glass bottle that was wrapped in white paper with blue dots. The bottle contained the concentrated Calpis stuff and you poured it into a glass and added cold water. I would always add a little extra to make it a bit sweeter and then my mom would always yell at me for putting too much in and warning me that I would get fat from all the sugar I ate. Anyway, the Calpis company also markets its brand, mainly in the US, as
Calpico, most likely due to its original name that sounds like "Cow Piss". I don't blame the company for making the switch because I had to endure laughs from my white devil friends who just didn't understand what they were missing. There is also a Calpis/Calpico soda that is carbonated and tastes better than the concentrate stuff, but still has a sweet, milky flavor.

What I'm getting at is, if you mixed Gatorade or Powerade with Calpico you would get Accelerade. Now I want to buy Gatorade and Calpico, start mixing, and have a taste test.

I wonder if the major sports leagues will begin to feature the new sports drink. Since Gatorade probably locked up JS Giguere for the rest of his career, I wonder who will be the next NHL sports drink whore.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Not bitter at all

Until Cammalleri and the Kings have that damn arbitration hearing I'm stuck with reporting unbelievably important news such as, the Kings re-signing John Zeiler to a multi-year contract. Yes, you read that correctly and no, I did not mistype that last sentence; Zeiler is back with the Kings for more than one season. Kings fans will now be able to take in the high-energy, hit-'em-as-hard-as-you-can style of play that Zeiler exhibits so willingly for more than one season. While Zeiler gets to skate around like an 8-year old skating as fast as he can to the nearest toilet so he doesn't shit his pants, I get to sit at my wonderful cubicle, stare at a computer screen, design some stuff, write a couple reports, and get paid a miniscule fraction of what Zeiler will probably make. I love my life.

Saturday, July 21, 2007


Back in the day when the LA Kings were on top of the world, Wayner was a guest on SNL. I was really young at the time, just shy of 7 years, which confirms my initial thought that I was 6 not 7 when I became a hockey and Kings fan for life. The only sketch that I remember from this episode was the one where Gretzky was at a restaurant and treated the viewers to a lovely rendition of Mona Luckahiki Means Hockey. I think I remember this sketch because my family watched it over and over and over again laughing hysterically at how awesomely horrible he was at singing. I think it's great that he was such a good sport to not only be on SNL but to take on a role in which he would have to sing. I've never thought of Wayne as being a charismatic person onscreen and his acting was terrible throughout the entire episode but Waikiki Hockey is definitely something that any hockey fan should watch.

Which brings me to...

JMFJ should be the next (and only second) NHLer to host SNL. I realize fans would argue that Sidney Crosby or Alexander Ovechkin should be on it since they're currently more popular sports figures, but let me give my argument:

Crosby would be worse than Gretzky because he would probably be so concerned about how his appearance on SNL would affect the NHL's reputation. His onscreen personality isn't that much better than Gretzky's and I'm sure Lemieux would be at every rehearsal and meeting telling the writers what they can and cannot have Crosby do. Overall, it would be BORING!

Ovechkin would be perfect for the show if he could actually speak English. I like to think I'm pretty good at understanding broken English, what with growing up with my non-native English speaking mother, teaching her the correct pronunciation for words like 'odor' and 'ballerina', but it is so difficult for me to understand the kid. I know that he's trying really hard to master the language, so maybe in 5 years he'll be prepared.

The only things standing in the way of JMFJ hosting the SNL are (1) the popularity of the LA Kings and (2) his NHL experience. First, the LA Kings need to get good fast. Once that happens, then all the celebrities in this fake-ass town will show up and start taking notice of the team and really take notice of the hotties (read: JMFJ). He also needs to play a couple more seasons, get in and win more scraps, and knock a couple teeth out of players like Pronger, Tucker, and Perry. JMFJ has the personality, looks, charm, and presence to be a quality SNL host.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

This week is...

JMFJ week. With already two consecutive posts about the kid why stop now? Next week I'll only write posts about another fabulous Kings player.

Why is it that every time I see Mike Modano I think of JMFJ. And whenever I see JMFJ I think of Modano. I think they sort of look alike, but whenever I put their pictures next to each other on my fireplace mantle, they don’t quite look like twins (hence, the lack of a Twinsies post). It might be because JMFJ is approximately 20 years younger than Modano, give or take a few years. Or it might be because I really hope that JMFJ doesn’t grow up to be just like Mike. Sure, I want him to grow old beautifully with a frazzled mane of golden hair, a baby face that will ensure he looks at least 5 years younger, and dashing good looks that make ladies of all ages swoon at the sight of him. But here is a list of things that infamously define Mike Modano; I hope JMFJ does not make the same mistakes.

  1. Lose millions through a shifty financial advisor: Even though a couple million lost through bad investments only means that he’s still worth several million (or at least he should), if Modano's making millions, he should be smart enough to invest through a trustworthy investor at a trustworthy company. JMFJ, do your research in finding someone who won’t lose you a year’s salary, because I won’t settle for a rented apartment in Redondo Beach that is a 10 minute drive to the beach. I demand a three-story beach front house in Manhattan Beach. Got it? Good.
  2. Slam USA Hockey because you’re a huge weenie: If Modano was unhappy with the way USA Hockey handled everything, he shouldn’t have bothered being a part of the Olympics. I doubt JMFJ will make this mistake, but it never hurts to remind.
  3. Date and then propose to a pseudo celebrity: JMFJ lives in LA and I’m sure he’ll brush shoulders with A-List Celebrities. Go for the gold or go for the girl next door. The ZZZ-List Celebrities will just embarrass you by taking on the role of Anna Nicole Smith .
  4. Date and then propose to someone who uses their real last name to create a first and last name: That is so unbelievably lame I don’t even know where to start. I wonder if Mike calls her Willa or Amanda. I hope he calls her Amanda because Willa sounds too much like Willow, which reminds me of those little people and Val Kilmer looking so not hot. There’s no way in hell she’s a Mandy because she’s not even close to being cute enough. Mandy Moore may be tall, but she’s still cute as a button.
  5. Let your fiancée do an interview for ESPN about you and your team: That is never a good idea for anyone especially if your fiancee’s name is Willa Ford or Elisha Cuthbert.
  6. Let your fiancée criticize your team for taking away your beloved “C”: I appreciate honesty but only when it’s done tastefully. If Modano was feeding her lines than he should have been the one doing the interview and not hiding behind her. If she did in fact come up with those eloquent responses all by herself…then I hope after the interview Modano told her to shut her yapper!!
In the years to come, JMFJ better not let down his female fanbase!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Would you hit it?

Margee and I have already submitted our votes for yes. How about you? Would you hit it?

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Old JMFJ Interview

It's another slow hockey news day and I'm feeling quite uncreative. I found a video on YouTube of JMFJ being interviewed by Nick Nickson. I think it was done about a month ago. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 15, 2007

New Old Stuff

Most of this is probably old news for most of you but since I've been gone since the wee hours of Wednesday I'm finally getting around to discussing some updates about the LA Kings.

Most importantly, the Kings signed Lubi to a 5-year extension, which will pay him $5.65 million per season beginning with the '08-'09 season. According to the
LA Times article Lubi was quoted as saying:

"I'm very happy to get this done because it gives me a chance to focus on the new season. I'm also very happy to be staying in L.A…. The Kings gave me my first chance and it's the team I want to stay with."

From the moment the season ended DL talked about signing Lubi to an extension, which I was cautious to believe. I'm very glad that those words were true and not just garble he spewed out to shut the media up. Lubi is a key player on the Kings' defensive corps and it will be great for the team to keep a player like Lubi. Especially with a young crop of budding stars in the farm system Lubi will not only be a huge offensive and defensive factor on the ice, but also will become one of the leaders of the team in the next couple of seasons. I wouldn't be surprised if we see him wearing the 'A' in the near future, especially with Matty and Aaron Miller gone and Blake edging near retirement.

As for a newbie, apparently the Kings signed forward Scott Parse to a two-year entry-level contract. His name sounds vaguely familiar and I'm pretty sure that I've wrote about him before because I get a lot of hits from searches involving "Scott Parse" and something about signing with the LA Kings. So for all of you Scott Parse groupies, there was your news.

The regular season schedule was announced. Who knows what my schedule will be like this upcoming season but the only game I really want to attend is the Home Opener, Saturday Oct. 6th v. STL, because they're so much fun with the fans going crazy about the new season. Last season's home opener was also on a Saturday against the Blues. We won that game; can we make it two in a row?

I'm disappointed with the Eastern Conference teams that will be visiting. I would have liked to see the Buffalo team from last season, but now I'm not so sure. Although, I think Buffalo will still be a decent team so maybe it'll be worth it. The Leafs and Islanders are coming to town and I really don't care to see either in person. The Senators and Canadiens will make it to SoCal in March and either could be a fun game to watch. Last year I wanted to attend at least one game per month and only wanted to see weekend games. If I hold myself to the same rules, here are the games I foresee myself attending:

  • Oct 6th v. STL: Home Opener!
  • Nov 3, 10, or 17 v. Sharks, Stars, or Coyotes, respectively. (I refuse to attend a Kings/Ducks game. I think I would cry if they lost and I don't like crying)
  • Dec 1 or 26 v. Avs or Sharks: Last year I took the 26th off and my family went to the game that night. It could be an annual tradition!
  • Jan 5 v. Flames
  • Feb 23 v. Blackhawks: Maybe I won't go to any games in February...
  • March 8 v. Canadiens
  • With only three games in April I may attend none or a playoff game if the Kings clinch a spot
When you get drafted by an NHL team what do you expect to hear from one of your closest friends who was drafted a year earlier by the same team? You'd be correct if you guessed:

"Why Can't I Quit You??"

After being drafted by the Kings in last month's draft, Alec Martinez received a text message (we're so digital these days!) from Jeff Zatkoff, his teammate and roommate from Miami University, who was selected by the Kings in the 2006 Draft. He texted Alec:

"I can't get away from you, can I?"

So it wasn't word for word what you had guessed, but c'mon, we all know what he was saying...

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

To Keep You Occupied

Since I won't be able to post till Sunday or Monday, here's a list of sites that are worth at least a daily visit (if not hourly) just in case you haven't already seen them:

  • B*tchany usually posts daily about her Blue Jackets. If you want to learn more about the BJs (oooooh, that didn't sound good!) look for the "Meet My Player" posts. My personal favorite is the one about the lovely, dreamy Rick Nash

  • Along with news about the Caps, Shmee shares her dislike for little Sidbits.

  • HLOG almost always has a new daily post from one of its members. Margee recently paired up some players with supermodels and gave us insight into how their relationships play out

  • Pookie and Schnookie over at IPB are currently providing reasons why they like hockey. Check out the mind-blowing comments thread. Step away from your computer for 30 minutes and you'll be 50 comments behind. Good luck keeping up but definitely check it out!

  • The always insightful Sherry over at Scarlett Ice keeps close tabs on the Sens and lives and breathes the team

  • Jordi is slowly but surely convincing every female hockey fan to become a fan of Komisarek. Just take a look at his picture and you'll understand

  • The always amusing Margee with her biting sarcasm and offensive (but good natured) remarks provides us with hockey news, baseball news, and all-around sports squee news. Caution: do not drink or eat anything while reading her blog due to the potential of blowing liquids out of your nose or choking on your food because of the hilarity of her posts.

Overall, any HLOGer's blog will successfully provide hours of amusement. If you feel like being entertained by non-hockey news, might I suggest the following:

  • Hate (most) celebrities? So does The Superficial

  • Stuff on My Cat because let's face it, stuff on cats is hilarious.

  • Don't like cats? Then check out its sister site, Stuff on My Mutt

  • Don't be that one coworker who says, "What's Wikipedia?" You'll either sound old or completely out of the loop.

  • Kevin and Bean is a hilarious radio morning show. Check out the "Sounds" (the link is in the left column) for some great clips

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Kings (non)Update and Interview

Not much has happened lately in the land of the LA Kings. Here’s what I’ve uncovered from scouring the team’s website.

La Kings 2007 Development Camp began Sunday, July 8 and will end Saturday July 14. The Toyota Sports Center isn’t too far from my living quarters but I didn’t feel like waking up before noon on Sunday to watch little boys make ice flurries. Since I still have a full-time job that is not close to the rink I won’t be able to take a long coffee break and sneak a peek. No news yet on which players impressed and I’m not expecting to hear anything from the LA Times ever and I bet the LA Kings website will have a summarized report of the Camp once it ends.

Luc Robitaille took part in the Draft process for the first time as part of the team’s personnel staff. I was disappointed to find a lack of juicy gossip in the report. What? No reports of who passed gas the most often? Who’s the crankiest in the morning or which guy pulled off the best prank? Instead of the fun stuff we learned that the staff endures a lot of pressure and nervous moments. C’mon Luc, during your draft you spent 9 rounds sitting in the stands, practicing for the annual Hot Dog competition and you didn’t notice the amount of work that every team puts in?

There’s an
article about newly acquired winger Kyle Calder. It’s titled, ”A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Rock N Roll”, the lamest title ever. Just because a guy twiddles his fingers on a guitar doesn’t make him a country music star or the next Dave Matthews. The only interesting tidbit in the article is that his nickname is Grease, ”due to the ‘play along the boards’.” Don’t get it? Yeah, me neither. KC, you need another nickname. Oh, wait, did I just give you one?! KC, so clever. Or how about KCal? (SoCal fans will get that one.)

What I was really hoping to find on the Kings website was an interview with Michal Handzus. However, seeing how boring the Robitaille and Calder interviews/articles were, how about I give you a glimpse into what my interview of Handzus would be like:

kms2: Handzie…can I call you that? No, wait, don’t answer that, because no matter what you say I’m going to call you that.
Michal Handzus: umm…ok?
K: What’s more exciting about coming to LA? Finally being able to snuggle with fellow Slovaks, Nagy and Lubie, or surfing the waves with Blake?
MH: Who’s Blake? Didn’t he retire a couple seasons ago? Well, I guess I’d have to say snuggling with Nagy and Lubie. Those guys are great.
K: Oh yeah? Good answer. So who’s the big spoon?
MH: Well, look at me, obviously it’s me!
K: (being under 5’ she can’t quite see his eyes since he’s 6’5”) Yeah, dumb question, sorry. Next one: How long did it take you to grow your hair that long?
MH: I’ve had it this length for so long I can’t even remember.
K: Obviously you use conditioner. But do you wet, lather, rinse, and repeat?
MH: Definitely repeat. You never know what the guys will stick in there.
K: Do you think you could help any of the other guys with taking better care of their hair?
MH: Oh sure! Fro and Jack Johnson both have flat hair. I have some recommendations that would give them more volume. It would give them more sex appeal.
K: Oh, Handzie, you need to call him JMFJ! Didn’t you hear? He almost choked a bitch for calling him Jack Johnson. And I don’t think JMFJ needs to have volume because he already takes down ass like you wouldn’t believe! And around here we say squee-appeal. Seriously, Handzie where have you been??

The interview would continue for another 5 or 10 minutes with the two of us giggling like high school girls, gossiping about each player, holding hands playing hopscotch...the usual. When the interview would finally come to a close, we would bid each other adieu promising to meet again for another interview at the end of the season to recap his first season with the Kings.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Twinsies 5.0

Was that Billy Guerin in The Wire? Was that Dominic West being named captain of the New York Islanders? Am I seeing double?

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Twinsies 4.0

Gryffindor? I would have picked him for Slytherin!

Friday, July 6, 2007

Tribute to JR

I know it's old news, but I just had to make a tribute to JR. While I was less than thrilled to have him in a Kings jersey a couple seasons ago I did appreciate his time in the league. He used to be a pretty damn good hockey player...it was just 10 years ago, not one or two. He was so good in fact, that I actually kept his hockey cards out in the binder pages and not lost in the stacks of commons along with the likes of Randy Carlyle (Score card, Jets jersey, no helmet) and Bryan Hayward (Sharks franchise team, therefore, no action shot, just your typical high school photo shoot). I dug up all of his cards that I could find without spending too much time. During the photoshoot my bf asked, "Oh, are you taking pictures so you can sell them on ebay?" To which I laughed and almost snorted from the hilarity of that question. "No, sweetie, I'm going to make a tribute to JR!" And by tribute, I mean, kiddie art. I don't have photoshop and my Paint skills are limited, but I did the best I could. Now kids, don't go stealing this and sell it on ebay. I know it's a work of art but it's mine...all mine!

x-posted to HLOG

Somewhat Nervous

As I had expected and feared, Cammalleri is taking the Kings to arbitration. Last offseason, the Kings managed to avoid arbitration by re-signing Cammy to a one-year deal worth $1.7 million. I still think that was a fair deal and I think the Kings re-signed him to a one-year deal to see how he would do the upcoming season. Since Cammy's production exploded this past season, I was expecting the Kings to try to lock him up while also giving him a pay raise.

Since I am not too familiar with anything related to hockey contracts, I give you the explanation on
TSN's article:

"Arbitrators can only hand out one or two-year awards. Arbitrator decisions must be made within 48 hours of the hearing, and teams then have 48 hours (or 48 hours after the team's last hearing is concluded if they have more than one) to accept the contract or walk away, immediately making the player an unrestricted free agent. Note that a team that requests arbitration does not have walk-away rights."

Why I'm worried:
  1. While I would like to think that Cammalleri isn't a greedy little bastard, if Drury apparently is one, I guess anyone can be. I wish I knew what DL actually offered Cammalleri, but since I don't, here's what I would have offered him if I was DL: 3-year contract paying him $3 million this coming season , $3.5 million the next season, and $4 million the year after that with, of course, bonus options. Considering how inflated a lot of the recent free-agent contracts are, I'm very worried that Cammalleri is going to be asking for over $4 million and maybe even close to $5 million. I'm honestly not sure if he's worth that much since he only has one stellar season to his name. My recurring nightmare is that DL will laugh in Cammy's face if he asks for $5M and then I'll have to suffer when I read that Ed-Mon-Ton snatched him up.

  2. If the Kings agree to re-sign Cammalleri they will only be able to re-sign him for a maximum of two years. It would be nice if we could lock him up for at least three years, but I guess I can't have everything.

  3. I wonder if salary arbitration is bad for player/personnel relations. If a player takes an organization to arbitration is that a slap in the GM's face or do the GMs take it in stride, understanding that it's just a business and everyone is just trying to get paid?

Why I'm not worried:

  1. The Kings have a lot of cap space left after not overpaying for Briere, Drury, Gomez, or Souray. I realize that DL is cautious with spending too much now in fear that he won't be able to re-sign Kopi and JMFJ in the near future. It's completely understandable and considering how smitten I am with Kopi, I would be devastated if the Kings couldn't afford to re-sign him when his time comes. With available cap space, DL is now able to attempt to re-sign Cammy and Lubo to longer contracts and pay them a bit more than they may deserve in order to secure their place on a team in which they're surely becoming franchise players.
I really hope the Kings bring back Cammalleri even if he is awarded an inflated contract. I'm confident that he'll continue to be a power forward in seasons to come. Also, who else on the offensive line is squee-worthy? I'll have a lot of time to think about who else deserves the Kings Squee Crown since arbitration doesn't begin until July 20th. I guess I should call my nail salon and cancel my upcoming appointment since I won't have any nails till after July 20th.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Die Hard

It's a slow hockey day, so I present you the Die Hard music video. You may have already seen it on YouTube or on TV as part of the Die Hard 4 commercial, but I just found it today. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

1 new, 1 old

I don't think Souray is heading to LA, or at least not to play in a Kings jersey. Before free agency began I was hoping that DL would bring in Souray. After today, I'm perfectly content with what we have. In fact, I'm more than content; I'm very excited and anxious for the season to start. Instead of probably overpaying for one defenseman who provides a lot of offense but also happens to be a defensive liability, we paid a decent amount for two defenseman without having to sign either of them to a lifetime contract. In today's LA Times article DL was quoted as saying "I'm not prepared to build this and put eight-year contracts out there, that gets risky. When you see what happens to a lot of NBA teams that went that route, it's dangerous." Sure, you may say that locking up Thornton or Vinny isn't a bad idea, but I do think that there are some players (*cough* DiPietro, Jagr, Gomez *cough*) who have long-term contracts that could possibly not end well.

Today brought a new guy,
Brad Stuart, and a returnee, Jason LaBarbera, to the Kings. Like Calder, Brad Stuart didn't have a great season last year. The Kings signed him to only a one-year contract worth $3.5 million. Is he worth that much? I honestly don't know because I don't know much about him other than what I can read from the myriad of sports profiles. Matt over at Life in Hockeywood noted that DL is probably letting Stuart and Nagy (who is also signed on to a one-year contract) know that they have something to prove. I think it's probably similar to what he did with Cammalleri last off-season, during which a one-year contract was agreed upon. Despite the organization having a horredous season, Cammalleri played like he had a fire lit under his arse the entire season. He's an incredibly hard working player and work ethic paid off with an amazing career record-breaking season. I sure hope that Stuart and Nagy get it done this upcoming season like Cammalleri did this past season.

I'm not surprised that LaBarbera was re-signed and Garon was signed with another organization, the Oilers. Like
I wrote back in June, "I also think that LaBarbera’s success at Manchester will garner him the other goalie spot. Which leads me to…Sayonara Mathieu Garon. He’s been good at times but never consistent enough to lead the Kings." While I would love Cloutier to be replaced by Lundqvist or Emery, I realize that signing either of them is a long shot. As long as LaBarbera doesn't have another family emergency he has the potential to prove a lot of critics wrong. And with a defensive corps consisting of Blake, Lubi, JMFJ (he has no other name), Stuart, and Preissing...he better not let the team down with a plethora of soft goals as Cloutier did last season.

How many more days till the season starts??

Monday, July 2, 2007

Meet the New Four

I just went to the Kings website and the front entry page has a photo of each of the four new Kings. It looks goooooood and I'm very excited!!!

DL's Moves

I was quite disappointed last night when I found out that Drury picked the Rangers over the Kings. Who knows what the Kings offered him but would have I wanted the Kings to pay him an average of more than $7.357 million per season? I don't know. Who knows what his reasons were for picking the Rangers. I would have thought that with Jagr and Gomez on the team that Drury wouldn't want to be there too. But maybe he wants two higher profile players to be on the same team as him so that he won't garner most of the spotlight. Whatever. Gomez, you're dead to me. Drury...you're getting close.

This morning as I sat at my cube perusing every hockey-related website I could find, my hopes kept dying with every hour that passed without a single signing. When I came back from lunch I saw, what is that? a rumor! The Kings were after Preissing! I remembered Preissing from the playoffs when I took a chance on him and picked him for my fantasy team. He had a decent first round but his production tapered off by the end of the playoffs. He's an astonishing +65 over his 3-year career and I'm looking forward to seeing him in a Kings jersey.

Later in the day, 2 more signings were announced: Michal Handzus and Ladislav Nagy. Michal Handzus has the worst hairstyle in the NHL but yet it is so awesome. I really hope he doesn't change it. I'm slightly worried about the injury that Handzus had last year and am just a bit scared that he may end up like Cloutier, although I'm not sure anyone could be as bad as Cloots was last year. He hasn't played since late October. Interestingly enough, Handzus, Nagy, and Kyle Calder, the last player to be signed today, have all been traded with each other or for one another. Handzus and Nagy played in St. Louis together and both were traded to Phoenix. Prior to last season, Handzus was traded from Philly to Chicago for Kyle Calder.

Ladislav Nagy has it in him to be a good playmaker. I wonder if he'll play with Handzus or Kopi.

At first I was disappointed that we signed Kyle Calder because I knew that he didn't do too well in Philly. But then I looked at his career stats and noticed that Philly was really an offseason for him and it probably was because he was with Philly.

I'm getting tired so he's my quick wrap up. I'm happy with what DL did today. We got some great players for not an ungodly amount of money and I can't wait till the season starts so I get to see my new team!!