|The Los Angeles Kings' average attendance grew by almost 30% with Wayne Gretzky’s arrival -- from 11,667 in 1987-88 to 14,875 in 1988-89. |
• In the season prior to Gretzky’s arrival in Los Angeles (1987-88), the Kings sold out five home games; in 1988-89, they sold out 24.
• The Kings' average attendance grew by almost 30% with Gretzky’s arrival -- from 11,667 in 1987-88 to 14,875 in 1988-89.
• Kings’ game broadcasts increased by 55% with Gretzky’s arrival – from 27 in 1987-88 to 60 in 1988-89.
• On June 1, 1990 the San Francisco Bay Area was conditionally awarded an early expansion franchise (which became the San Jose Sharks) to begin League play in 1991-92. On August 15, 1990 nine cities applied for NHL expansion franchises, including: Houston, Miami, Phoenix, San Diego, St. Petersburg, Seattle, Tampa Bay, Ottawa and Hamilton. Ottawa and Tampa Bay joined the League in 1992-93 followed by Anaheim and Florida in 1993-94.
• During the 1989 and 1990 pre-seasons, the Kings play in numerous non-NHL cities, including: Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Miami, Milwaukee, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, and Tampa Bay.
• On September 19, 1990 a record crowd of 25,582 attended a game in the Suncoast Dome in St. Petersburg, Florida where the Gretzky and the Kings lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins (5-3).
• 22 California-born players have played in the NHL since August, 1988. A total of 47 have been drafted, including three players in each of the last two NHL Entry Drafts: In 2007 Nashville selected Jonathan Blum (Long Beach, CA) 23rd overall, New Jersey selected Corbin McPherson (Folsom, CA) 87th overall, and Washington selected Brett Bruneteau (San Francisco, CA) 108th overall. In 2008 Calgary selected Mitch Wahl (Long Beach, CA) 48th overall, Detroit selected Max Nicastro (Thousand Oaks, CA) 91st overall and Phoenix selected Colin Long (Santa Ana, CA) 99th overall. Jonathan Blum became the first California-born player to be selected in the first round of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
Author: NHL.com Staff