It’s 75 Degrees Outside And I’m Inside

Going into the weekend, there have been plenty of updates from the Kings camp that I have been keeping up with in my podcasts, but I realized that I should probably type something out for your viewing pleasure.
  • I realize that I haven’t written anything about Rob Blake signing his one-year deal with San Jose, but I have addressed this in Kings World Podcast episode 1.5 and in the I’m Not a Puck Bunny Podcast episode 22. I didn’t ignore it by any means; it was just too devastating for me to write anything the moment it happened because he’s obviously more than just a hockey player to me. Please look for a question-and-answer I did for Gann Matsuda when he comes out with a piece on Lombardi…
  • The Kings have re-signed four RFAs: Matt Moulson, Erik Ersberg, Gabe Gauthier, and Joe Piskula.
    • The most important out of these four was Moulson. I couldn’t imagine the Kings releasing him into free agency waters. He made a good showing in his 22 games with the Kings last year and it just seemed natural for him to be re-signed.
    • Ersberg was going to take the Kings to arbitration because he apparently wanted to re-sign with a one-way contract so that he’d get the same amount coming to him if he was playing in Los Angeles or Manchester. That was the word on the street before he re-signed for $700,000. I guess whatever was going on was patched up and we all moved along.
    • The re-signing of Gabe Gauthier seems to make sense because he had a good presence in Manchester in terms of leadership last season.
    • I... have nothing to say about Joe Piskula.
  • Terry Murray was hired as the Kings new head coach. From his background as a coach, his affiliation with the Philadelphia Flyers, and his coaching philosophy, he seems like he’ll fit in well with this rag-tag bunch of young bucks. Before I was pretty indifferent about who the new coach would be after Craig Hartsburg was taken off the market, but now I’m getting excited for the start of the season with knowing that there is a competent coach behind the bench. He will be employed by the Kings for three years and will be paid $2.65 million. Apparently bloggers aren't supposed to quote from the Associated Press, so you can read about his history here.
  • Christmas in July!!! The NHL 08-09 schedule was released today and I have spent some time perusing the schedule and taking note of specific games.
    • First and foremost, I’ve concluded that the scheduling committee must hate me. We all know that my favorite player is now on my most hated team, and apparently the scheduling committee knows this too since the Kings’ home opener and closer are against the Sharks. I couldn’t even call that irony; that’s just straight up cruel. The first year I’m able to afford season tickets I have to watch a hostile crowd spew its venom onto the player that I hold most dear to my heart. My friend that I’m getting season tickets with, AJ, has promised to buy me the biggest beer available for those games against the Sharks. We’ll see if that’s able to stop the tears from flowing…
    • I guess I also have to point out the the Kings are opening their season on the road as well. They're obviously not going to London again to play against the Ducks at the O2 Arena. No, they're playing the Sharks... at the Tank. *sigh*
    • If I had to choose just one game that I’m most excited for it’s on Thursday, November 20th against the Washington Capitals. I’m sure the buzz in Los Angeles for Alexander Ovechkin’s arrival won’t be as big as when he goes into Canada, but this game will definitely be a huge draw for Kings fans. To see a superstar in Staples Center will definitely fill the seats. Personally, as much as I’m looking forward to seeing AO on the ice, I’m almost as excited to see Sergei Fedorov as well. He was always someone I liked watching as a kid, so I’m definitely looking forward to this game. Fer sure.
    • Saturday, November 1st will be interesting. Michael Cammalleri makes his Staples Center debut in a Flames jersey and I’ll definitely be looking at who his linemates are. I can't actually predict what the reaction will be when he touches the puck. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was silence, which one might equate to indifference, but I wouldn’t see that as the case either.
    • Another game to note will be on Friday, December 5th against the Edmonton Oilers. This will be Lubomir Visnovsky’s first game back at Staples and I hope the fans give him the warmest welcome possible. We miss you, Lubo!
    • Saturday, January 3rd will be another fun one for me. The Philadelphia Flyers will be in town and I’ll get to see Daniel Briere (who I heart) and Marty Biron. There are some teams where I just can’t explain why I like them, and the Flyers are one of those teams. I think Briere being on the roster also adds to why I like them.
    • The Kings have two 5-game roadtrips and one 6-game roadtrip in the second half of the season and all three are within a 2-month span. The two 5-game roadtrips bookend February while the 6-gamer occupies the latter half of March. Two teams that traveled to the west coast last season were the Ottawa Senators and the Montreal Canadians. This coming season, the Kings are going to their houses. I'm bummed we won't see those two teams at Staples, but no worries, they'll be on TV, right FSN?...
  • The longest home stance is for 7 games. It starts on Monday, October 27th against the Red Wings (…yay…) and ends on Tuesday, November 11th against the Stars (…yay for Sean Avery…).
    • There are 14 Saturday games AT Staples. 8 start at either 7PM or 7:30PM, which means that 6 of them will start at 1PM.
    • After being confused with Cat for a couple of minutes, we figured out that neither the Kings nor the Stars were playing on Thanksgiving. Duh, right?
    • The down time between Christmas and the New Year has three games going on, so Kings fans won't be too bored.
    • Last year the Kings played the Chicago Blackhawks on New Year's Day, but this year, Kings fans will be ringing in the new year with just Winter Classic II.
    • The longest period without any Kings games is from Thursday, January 22nd to Wednesday, January 28th.
    • Last year the last game of the season was held on the same weekend as the San Diego Crew Classic. I was definitely bummed about that because being away gave the season an anti-climactic feel to it, personally. But this year the schedule will be going a week longer so I'll be able to better gauge which event I want to go to, the SDCC or a game against the Coyotes...
    • April has 6 games and only 3 are against Pacific Division rivals. Thank god.
    • There are 15 occurrences of back-to-back games.
      • 9 - Both games are away
      • 5 - One home and one away
      • 1 - Both home games
    • I think that's all for now. Oh, the Frozen Fury is going to ROCK.


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