Saturday, September 3, 2011

Moreau's highs and lows from Edmonton and Columbus

A few days ago Ethan Moreau got his first taste of being inside Staples Center as a member of the Kings. It between observing the work being done to the ice and taking photos with other guests, he shared several thoughts about signing his recent deal with Los Angeles.

First off, even though it's a one-year contract, he doesn't see this as his last year in the NHL. Sure, he's already played 900 games over 15 seasons in the league. However, he says he's finally healed up and ready for more - much more.

In fact, at 35, he says he wouldn't mind playing until he's 40.

Yet, that's the road ahead. And before moving on to training camp with the Kings in a few weeks, he reflected back on the travels that have brought him to this stage of his career.

"Going to the Finals was probably the high and the low point," he said, when speaking of his time playing in Edmonton. "We were one game away from winning a Stanley Cup. Then, losing was probably the low point because you come so close to realizing a dream that doesn't happen - you're left with a very, very empty feeling - which is motivation to get back there with this team and to win it. That's the only thing that will kind of make that feeling go away."

Things were different in Columbus, where he was limited to just 37 games last year due to injuries.

"It was exciting to start last season there. I had a lot of responsibility and I played a lot early in the season. Unfortunately, I broke my hand and had to have surgery, which really derailed my year. Like you said, I only played 37 games, so it was tough to get a great feeling for the organization or the city. But, I enjoyed my time there, even though it was short."

Although Moreau and fellow LA roster addition Mike Richards are very different players, one thing they have in common is knowing what it's like to play in a hockey-crazed market.

Richards has already acknowledged he thinks he'll like it better in LA, where he can focus more on the game and less on answering questions away from the rink.

Moreau already had a taste of a 'less intense' market when he was the Blue Jackets last year. Did he find it any easier?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

VIDEO: LA Kings ice comes to life for 2011-12 NHL season

As most of you know from following along on twitter and facebook, there was a little bit of an NHL season kick-off at Staples Center on Wednesday afternoon. Ethan Moreau, Luc Robitaille, Bailey and others were on hand for part of the ice preparation leading up to the 2011-12 season.

Earlier, I posted some pictures from the event and comments from Moreau.

Now you can check out some time lapse video that shows the process from start to finish. According to Staples Center representatives, the process takes nearly two and half days to fully complete. As you'll see, things began following the LA Sparks game on August 30th and the ice was deemed 'ready for skating' earlier this afternoon.

SPECIAL NOTE: There's still time to enter the Drew Doughty contract contest! If you want to win a free t-shirt just by making a simple guess, click here.

The Mayor

Final notes and pics of Anze Kopitar as he leaves Slovenia

Last week we shared some photos and notes from Anze Kopitar's training over in the beautiful city of Bled, Slovenia...and he's now ready to return 'home' to Los Angeles.

Monday morning he'll be boarding a flight and heading back to the U.S., giving him a few days to get his legs under him before HockeyFest on the 11th and the opening of Kings training camp a few days later.

During what could be described as a 'farewell for now' press conference yesterday afternoon, Kopitar shared the following thoughts...

* On the injury and his recovery - The injury is fine and his leg no longer hurts him. A few of the training sessions /exercises had to be adjusted. Otherwise, everything went pretty much as planned. He was in regular communication with the doctor who operated on him, the medical team and training staff back in California. Everything went as planned, some things he was even able to do sooner than expected. His skates are a little uncomfortable at times because the ankle is still swollen. However, he's not too concerned about it.

* On the actual workouts - He believes the level of training was optimal and is confident the staff back in LA will agree with what they see when he arrives. His typical workout began with an hour and a half of upper body training - including the shoulder area, which he believes can be vulnerable for a hockey player. He also did lots of aerobic and anaerobic exercises, mixed in with weight training.  Around three times a week he also did extended running at the local stadium. More recently, he's also been jumping over obstacles, which was a good test for his ankle. As reported on MayorsManor back in July, he's been training on the ice for about a month now - starting out two to three times a week and building up to four times a week.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ethan Moreau happier to be with Kings than playing them

Ethan Moreau was practically a member of the Kings before he ever signed a contract.

Over the last few seasons, many of his former friends and one-time teammates were traded here - guys like Jarret Stoll, Matt Greene and Dustin Penner.

Combine that with the fact he's spent many of those summers in Southern California training with his brother - and occasionally some of the Kings players - and you'll start to understand why he already felt like Los Angeles was home.

It wasn't even that surprising to him when Kings captain Dustin Brown thumbed out a 'welcome aboard' tweet soon after his deal with Kings GM Dean Lombardi was made official.

"I've had tough games against Brownie and we've kind of gone at it on the ice," said Moreau.  "But, I've gotten to know him over the years and he was one of the first guys to call me. Overall, I have a pretty good relationship with most of the guys on the team. So, it was almost hard to play the Kings because I knew so many players on the team, just from being here in the summers and training with them and skating with them."

Even so, as a professional athlete, he says he was able to flip the necessary switch on game nights.

Hockeywood Insider podcast - talking Doughty, Moreau, etc.

Today I joined the guys from The Hockeywood Insider podcast for another discussion about the Los Angeles Kings and hockey news in general.

In the episode below, we talk about the Drew Doughty contract negotiations, LA's signing of Ethan Moreau, Tyler Toffoli's chances of making the Kings this season...and then we have a fun debate about some of the rule changes being explored by the NHL.

You can also get the podcast on itunes via the link available here.

For your convenience, several of the articles we reference during the podcast discussion are linked below.

The Mayor


Summer School with Ambroz and Nieto - NHL R&D campers weigh in with their thoughts

Dustin Penner on the Kings' acquisition of Ethan Moreau

Guest spot on FAN 960 radio in Calgary - recorded 8/17/2011

Exclusive MayorsManor interview - Tyler Toffoli talks Team Canada summer camp

Kings coach Terry Murray talks Dev Camp performance of Kozun and Toffoli

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Clarifying the confusion over the Kings' color purple

Kings' new purple-less crown's the deal...

The Los Angeles Kings are dropping the color purple.

Sort of.

The twitterverse is in a tizzy and facebook is in a frenzy over what many are reporting as the Kings dropping the color purple.

Part of that is true.  Per the team's official press release, their primary colors are now black, silver and white.

And as most Kings fans had previously heard, the Kings are moving to the 'shield' logo as their main crest (the one worn on a black jersey during the playoffs the last two years).

The real news in all of this is that the 'new' third jersey will now feature a slightly modified version of the crown that's been in place since Staples Center opened over a decade ago.

LA's 'new' crown is a black and white version, featuring no purple. However, this crest will be placed on the same black and purple jerseys worn at home over the last few seasons.

So, they'll still have purple on their third jerseys and, of course, on their vintage jerseys (to be worn three times this season).

If you've been reading MayorsManor, the dropping of purple from the crown is probably the only updated news here.  Last October I tweeted the Kings were looking at changing jerseys for the 2011-12 season.  Then, in this article back in January we shared some of the details.

In June, the first official picture of the new road jersey was revealed, along with some additional notes on the upcoming jersey shuffling.

Finally, just a few weeks ago, Kings President of Business Operations, Luc Robitaille stopped by MayorsManor to talk in-depth about the reasons behind the jersey changes.

Moral of the story - fear not Kings fans, we have you covered.

If you're looking for some more jersey related news before it breaks's a few tidbits we shared several weeks back...

This season's three Legends Nights - where the Kings will wear vintage purple and gold jerseys - are scheduled to be 12/10 vs. Dallas, 1/2 vs. Colorado and 2/18 vs. Calgary.  The honorees will be Bernie Nicholls, Daryl Evans and Charlie Simmer, as the team is planning to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the famed Miracle on Manchester.

...fine, fine, fine - you still want more?

This season, the black pants that will be worn under the new home jersey (black with the new shield logo, you still with me?)...those pants are getting a new silver stripe down the leg.

That's it. Done.

The Mayor

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