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Posted On Monday, 10.22.2012 / 10:13 AM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

L.A. Lakers meet the Stanley Cup

The Stanley Cup was back at the Staples Center on Sunday -- this time for a visit with one of the champion Los Angeles Kings' co-tenants. A number of the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers got up close and personal with the Cup following their preseason loss to Sacramento.

Star center Dwight Howard took pictures with the Cup after making his debut with the Lakers. Kobe Bryant merely glanced at it -- but he was familiar with the Cup after being seen at a few of the Kings' playoff games last spring.

Forward Metta World Peace was intrigued by the Cup and even did what he hoped was a first: eating almonds from it.

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Posted On Monday, 10.15.2012 / 2:10 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Kings' Sept. 11 victims get day with Cup

Eleven years after the Los Angeles Kings lost two of their own in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the team made sure the families of Garnet "Ace" Bailey and amateur scout Mark Bavis had their day with the Stanley Cup.

Bailey, the team's director of pro scouting, and Bavis had been heading from Boston to Los Angeles for the Kings' organizational meetings when their United 175 flight was hijacked and crashed into the south tower of the World Trade Center.

On Sunday, the Cup was brought to the 9/11 memorial at Ground Zero in New York, where the families of Bailey and Bavis got a chance to take part in the first championship in franchise history. Kings general manager Dean Lombardi was also there.

The Kings arranged to bring the Cup to the memorial in New York and posed it there, next to the engraved names of Bailey and Bavis. Some fans had paid their own tributes to the two soon after L.A.'s triumph in June by putting Kings caps and other team memorabilia near their names at the memorial.

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Posted On Friday, 09.21.2012 / 8:08 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Robitaille takes Stanley Cup to honor ailing mom

Luc Robitaille proved he is a son who will do what his mom says.

The Los Angeles Kings executive brought the Stanley Cup to his parents' home in Quebec to honor a request made by his mother Madeleine, who is suffering from liver cancer.

"She's never asked me for anything, my mom," Robitaille told the Los Angeles Times. "She said, 'Hey, if you win the Cup, can you take it home this time?' It was very matter of fact. I was like, 'Yeah, sure.' I hung up the phone thinking, 'We're going to win the Stanley Cup.'"

The exchange took place during the Kings' second-round Stanley Cup Playoff series against the St. Louis Blues.

"When someone who has never asked you to do something asks you, it means something," Robitaille said.

The newspaper provided details of the visit to Norbertville, which occurred this week before the Cup went to be engraved.

The village of 1,261 was treated to a short parade that was followed by a proclamation from the mayor. More than 400 people had their picture taken with the trophy.

Robitaille won the Cup while a player with the Detroit Red Wings in 2002; that offseason the Montreal native brought his parents to Los Angeles to celebrate.

This time, the Kings president of business operations took the Cup to his parents, as his mom asked.

"She figures it's the last time she'll see it," Luc's father Claude said.

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Posted On Thursday, 09.20.2012 / 5:40 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Stanley Cup making final stop for engraving

The Stanley Cup is taking the final trip of its summertime journey with the Los Angeles Kings.

"We are heading up to Canada on Thursday, it actually goes to get engraved," keeper of the Cup, Phil Pritchard, said on the Kings' website. "The 2011-12 Stanley Cup champion L.A. Kings are going to get their names on it."

The Cup made its final stops in Cape Cod, Mass., and at a rally in Manchester, N.H., site of the Kings' minor-league affiliate, on Sunday.

"If it was not for the Monarchs we would not have won the Cup," Kings president of business operations Luc Robitaille said. "... We are very thankful but we wanted to make sure the fans that follow the Monarchs understood that. For us, we know we would not have the success we have had without this team and organization and fans."

More than 2,000 fans attended an event at the Monarchs' arena.

"It has been amazing. It is amazing to see the crowd," Robitaille said. "I was overwhelmed just to drive in and see the crowd, I could not believe it. It went all the way around the block. It is pretty neat to see. I was surprised. I have to admit I did not expect that."

The Stanley Cup spent its final days on tour in Hollywood then on the East Coast on its way to the traditional engraving.

"The Stanley Cup is the greatest trophy in sports," Robitaille said. "There is nothing like it. There is only one. Each player gets it and there is so much tradition. It is almost over 120-years-old now and it has so much history. If it could talk it would have amazing stories, and there is nothing else like it. To a certain point, the game of hockey is such a high level, but the Stanley Cup stands on its own. It is such a special trophy and it makes it unbelievable any time you can see it live."

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Posted On Wednesday, 09.19.2012 / 12:53 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Kings keep promise with special Cup party

It's not always easy to take a man at his word, but businessman Chris Byrne had a good feeling in May when he received an email from Los Angeles Kings governor Tim Leiweke. Based on their correspondence, if everything went according to plan, Byrne, a longtime Kings fan, could be the host of his very own Stanley Cup party.

It started weeks earlier, when the Kings were struggling to secure the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. Byrne, whose roofing materials company has had Kings season tickets since the team played at the Great Western Forum, attended an event held by Leiweke. Though the presentation was intended to discuss plans for a football stadium in Los Angeles, the Kings governor spent much of his time talking about his hockey team. Inspired by Leiweke's passion, Byrne sent an email weeks later sharing his love for the Kings. It was a spirited message that included one small request.

"I just ended it with, assuming the Kings win the Cup, he'd make a fan from the beginning very happy if he would bring the Cup to an Irish pub in West Hollywood that we own a little part of," Byrne told NHL.com. "Amazingly enough, he wrote back the next day and said, 'Absolutely.' It's a tribute to that organization."

By the time Leiweke got in touch with Byrne, the Kings had already knocked off the Vancouver Canucks in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and had won the first two games in their Western Conference semifinal against the St. Louis Blues. A Kings fan practically since the team's arrival in Los Angeles, Byrne was confident the team could win the Stanley Cup for the first time in franchise history. But the 60-year-old wasn't completely sure if the iconic trophy would really make an appearance at his bar, Rock & Reilly's, in West Hollywood.

"They were playing St Louis and I told a guy, 'They're going to sweep St. Louis and win the Cup.' I felt it. After they beat Vancouver, I thought they were the best team there," Byrne said. "Time went by and he [Leiweke] made good on his word. He's a really good guy."

Sure enough, Leiweke came through on the promise he made almost four months earlier when he brought the Stanley Cup to a party held last week at Rock & Reilly's. Team president Luc Robitaille also was on hand.

"I have three girls who grew up watching the Kings. Kristen, my daughter, got her picture taken with Luc near the end of the party," Byrne said. "She told me later on it was the best day of her life."

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Posted On Tuesday, 09.18.2012 / 4:06 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Stanley Cup spends whirlwind week in Hollywood

The Stanley Cup is used to keeping a frantic schedule. But last week was especially busy for the iconic trophy, which shined even brighter in the company of some of Hollywood's biggest stars.

It started with a trip to the set of "Wheel of Fortune," where host and longtime Los Angeles Kings fan Pat Sajak couldn't help but show his excitement when the special guest arrived. For the Stanley Cup, it was just the beginning of a wild week in Hollywood.

After the game-show set, the Cup paid a visit to the production offices of the animated series "South Park." The show's co-creators, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, posed for photos with the Cup, and before long the entire staff was congregating around the trophy.

But the Cup wasn't reserved just for the film and television industries during its week in Los Angeles.

Considering the Kings share Staples Center with two NBA teams, it seemed only right the NHL team include its neighbors in the festivities. The Cup was first hosted by the Los Angeles Clippers, including some players and coach Vinny Del Negro, before the Los Angeles Lakers got their moment.

Though Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak was one of the most prominent team members to pose with the Cup, one of the team's newest players may have enjoyed its presence the most. Though Steve Nash has never tried to hide his love for the Vancouver Canucks, the point guard, who was traded to the Lakers in July, relished his moment with the trophy marking the Kings' championship.

Following appearances at local hospitals and charitable events, the Cup made its way to a pair of parties held by team governor Tim Leiweke and president of business operations Luc Robitaille. In typical Kings style, they welcomed a number of celebrities, including producer Jerry Bruckheimer, broadcasters Ryan Seacrest and Al Michaels, actors Michael Vartan, Michael Rosenbaum and Rita Wilson, as well as former Kings owner Bruce McNall.

It all ended Sunday, when the Cup travelled to Manchester, N.H., for an event held by the Kings' American Hockey League franchise, the Manchester Monarchs. The hundreds of fans in attendance at Verizon Wireless Arena were shocked when Robitaille carried the Cup into the building before making a short presentation.

From Manchester, Robitaille was scheduled to bring the Cup to Quebec, where it will take part in one of its final celebrations before being engraved later in September.

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Posted On Thursday, 09.13.2012 / 5:28 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Kings visit 9/11 Memorial to honor Bailey, Bavis

Members of the Los Angeles Kings this week visited the 9/11 Memorial in New York City to pay tribute to scouts Ace Bailey and Mark Bavis.

LA Kings Insider reports team governor Tim Leiweke and president Luc Robitaille visited the memorial Wednesday, and a group of players did so Thursday.

Each group from the Stanley Cup Champions brought a plaque to the site with an inscription that read, "From your friends at the L.A. Kings. You were with us every step of the way."

The executives and players were in New York for the Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations.

Bailey and Bavis were killed in the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

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Posted On Friday, 08.31.2012 / 6:32 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Martinez final Kings player to celebrate with Cup

Los Angeles Kings defenseman Alec Martinez started the week training at his old stomping grounds and ended it with a Stanley Cup celebration among friends and family.

A former standout for the Miami (Ohio) University Redhawks, Martinez was back at the school's Goggin Ice Center to participate in its week-long pro camp. Along with 19 other former Redhawks, including Andy Greene, Ryan Jones, Tommy Wingels and Andy Miele, Martinez returned to the ice for an intense training regimen overseen by Miami coach Enrico Blasi. But the camp wasn't just an opportunity for Martinez to work out and catch up with old teammates.

As one of only three Redhawks -- along with Dan Boyle and Kevyn Adams -- to win the Cup, Martinez was honored in the ice complex lobby. It was there that a massive portrait, showing Martinez during his college days as well as in his triumphant moment with the Kings, was placed on the wall of the building's entrance.

For the second-year player, the real Cup celebration took place Friday when the trophy arrived at his offseason home in Allen, Texas, about 30 miles north of Dallas.

Martinez received the Cup around 10:30 a.m., after which he and a group of friends and family, including some former Miami teammates, enjoyed lunch at a nearby driving range. From there, the Michigan native held a Cup party at his new home before enjoying dinner at a local restaurant.

For the town of Allen, it's the first time the Cup has been there since making an appearance at a 2009 game of the Allen Americans of the Central Hockey League.

While Kings players and coaches have all had their time with the Cup, other members of the organization are awaiting their day. Jeff Solomon, the team's vice president of hockey operations and legal affairs, receives the Cup in San Diego on Saturday, and members of the Kings' training staff will get it in Los Angeles after that.

The Cup's whirlwind summer will end next week with vice president of business operations Luc Robitaille before it is engraved in mid-September with the names of the championship squad.

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Posted On Thursday, 08.30.2012 / 2:21 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Lewis brings Lord Stanley to Salt Lake City

Thursday was already scheduled to be a big sports day in Utah, with the University of Utah, Utah State University, and Brigham Young University all scheduled to start their college football seasons that day.

But Trevor Lewis' arrival with the Stanley Cup is providing a nice boost for area hockey fans.

A prep hockey star growing up in Salt Lake City, the Kings center became the first Utah native to have his name inscribed on the Stanley Cup. So on his day with the Cup, Lewis decided to bring the trophy back to Salt Lake, where he starred at Brighton High School before joining the Des Moines Buccaneers of the USHL as a 17-year-old. And for a growing hockey community, it's a very big deal.

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Posted On Wednesday, 08.29.2012 / 5:41 PM

By Tal Pinchevsky -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Summer with Stanley blog

Wilson honors family, friends with Cup in Arizona

Denver Wilson's day with the Stanley Cup in Phoenix on Wednesday wasn't exactly typical. Then again, the Los Angeles Kings' assistant equipment manager took a path to the NHL that wasn't exactly typical either.

While the Cup has spent much of the summer in traditional hockey hotbeds, including Minnesota, Massachusetts and most of Canada, Wilson brought the most iconic trophy in sports to Arizona to honor the hockey community that helped carve his way to the NHL.

It starts with his father, Stan Wilson, who has been the Phoenix Coyotes' equipment manager since 1990, when the club was in Winnipeg. In his career with the franchise, the elder Wilson has worked more than 1,500 NHL games, including a tense five-game Western Conference final last May against his son's Kings.

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— Florida goalie Roberto Luongo after the Panthers defeated the Capitals in the longest shootout in NHL history on Tuesday
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