This week LAKings.com will feature interviews with several members of our alumni
Brian MacLellan is currently in his 11th season with the Washington Capitals and fifth as the team’s assistant general manager, player personnel. But before that MacLellan won a Stanley Cup with the Calgary Flames in 1989 and had a 10-year NHL career in which he skated for the Kings, New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars, Flames and Detroit Red Wings.
In Los Angeles, MacLellan – after a standout career at Bowling Green University – broke into the NHL with the Kings during the 1982-83 campaign. That next season MacLellan began to establish himself at the game’s highest level – he played in 72 games and scored 25 goals – while in 1984-95 he topped the 30-goal plateau while playing with the likes of Marcel Dionne, Bernie Nicholls, Dave Taylor and Jim Fox up front for head coach Pat Quinn.
He later moved on to the Rangers and three other NHL teams and now MacLellan continues his front office duties with Washington as he previously served as a pro scout from 2000-03 and then was promoted to director of player personnel, where he assists and advises vice president and general manager George McPhee in all player-related matters. MacLellan also oversees the club’s professional scouting staff and works closely with the team’s American Hockey League affiliate, the Hershey Bears, who won the Calder Cup in 2006, 2009 and 2010.
MacLellan, formerly a forward who played in 606 NHL games and recorded 172 goals, 241 assists and 413 points, also won a silver medal with Team Canada at the 1985 World Championship in Prague.
MacLellan earned his MBA in finance from the University of St. Thomas in 1995 and went on to work for an investment consulting firm in Minneapolis before joining the Capitals as a pro scout. He recently answered the following questions from LAKings.com as part of the club’s alumni series.
LAKings.com: You were signed out of college by the Kings in 1982. What was it like playing in the NHL later that season?
MacLellan: “It was great. It was an opportunity to fulfill my dream and my goal. It was pretty exciting to be able to do that.”
LAKings.com: What are your fondest memories of playing for the Kings organization?
MacLellan: “I think it was the people I was playing with. We had a lot of good, solid personalities. We had a lot of fun playing together. I think the memories of those guys and the fun we had together was the best.”
LAKings.com: How special was the 1984-85 season as you made the playoffs and were one of five Kings players to score 30 or more goals in one season (still the team record)?
MacLellan: “We had a good team, I thought. We played really well and we had two really solid lines up front that scored all the time. I thought we had a good defense too.”
LAKings.com: What was it like playing on a line with Marcel Dionne?
MacLellan: “It’s fun any time you get to play with a legend or a Hall of Fame player. It was a little intimidating at times but he was good. He helped develop my game. He had me play a certain way and I developed along with him.”
LAKings.com: How different is it evaluating players rather than playing?
MacLellan: “It’s been an education. I don’t think as a player you realize how much goes on behind the scenes, as far as the scouting and the management duties and responsibilities. I think it’s been an education of how much work goes on.”
Interview conducted by Ryan Kantor
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