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Jr. Kings-La Hockey Club Merger Announcement

by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
Synergy [sin-er-jee]   noun

The value and performance of two separate entities when combined will be greater than the sum of their individual parts.

El Segundo, California April 5, 2012 --- The LA Jr. Kings and the LA Hockey Club/LA Selects have agreed to merge both youth hockey organizations under the LA Jr. Kings banner.   Each respective Board of Directors recognized that both organizations share mutual hockey philosophies and both club mission statements promoted similar ideals.  Continuing operations as a non-profit organization, the merged effort is about creating a new LA Jr. Kings program to better serve hockey growth and development in Southern California.  Together with the Toyota Sports Center, the focus will be on developing entry level players within the TSC Legends Youth House Hockey League and their eventual graduation into the Jr. Kings youth travel hockey program.

The transition toward this collective effort will be seamless.  The new LA Jr. Kings program will enhance the player/parent experience by offering:

•    A coaching staff of nationally recognized teaching professionals
•    Focus on individual skills development at all levels
•    Offer a beginner to advanced hockey curriculum from Mites to Midgets
•    Foster growth and guidance for players looking to move to the next level
•    Increased number of teams offering greater opportunities for all players at all levels
•    Continued membership in Tier 1 Elite League for 16AAA and 18AAA
•    Ongoing effort to make hockey more affordable
•    The club will operate at both the Toyota Sports Center and Glacial Gardens Skating Arena

The club leadership will be addressing specific organizational priorities over the next couple of weeks and will provide updates to our current collective membership as well as new prospective members.  Please monitor our website at:  www.lajrkings.com  or email Kelly Sorensen at Kelly@kellysorensen.com or Andrew Cohen at lajrkings@gmail.com

Message from Toyota Sports Center --  The Toyota Sports Center is pleased to announce the hiring of James Gasseau to the position of Director of Youth Hockey.  In this position James will administer all aspects of the TSC youth hockey programs and player development.  “Our core business is the development of new youth hockey players.  Given James’s experience and success we are very pleased to have him join our staff,” said Brad Berman President of American Skating Entertainment Centers, (operators of the Toyota Sports Center).

James Gasseau began his relationship with the Southern California hockey community in 1996.  He started working at the Iceoplex in North Hills as the rink hockey director as well as coaching with the West Valley Wolves.  In 1998, when the SCAHA Tier 1 program began James was on the cutting edge of Tier 1 hockey development having coached Jr. Kings teams from 1998 through 2003.  In that five year period, his teams earned three USA Hockey national championships (12u, 14u, and 16u) as well as two Quebec International B Championships.  In 2002-03 James was also the hockey director at the LA Kings’ El Segundo facility (then called Healthsouth Training Center) where he founded the El Segundo Regents youth hockey program.  From 2003 to present, James has been president of the LA Hockey Club/LA Selects whose program helped raise the bar of hockey growth and development here in Southern California.   In his past fourteen years of local hockey, James also served on the CAHA board, coached the Pacific District Select Festival 1984 birth year gold medal team, coached several Team California Chicago Showcase championship wins, and served as a USA Select Festival evaluator.  With this merger, James rejoins the Toyota Sports Center as their hockey director and also returns home to the LA Jr. Kings hockey program.

Contact James Gasseau at:  jgasseau@toyotasportscenter.com

Message from Luc Robitaille:

“We are very happy to have James Gasseau involved with the hockey program at Toyota Sports Center and with the Jr. Kings as he continues to be an innovator in hockey development here in Southern California.  We believe this is another significant step forward in our efforts to help continue to grow the game of hockey as new players continue to take the ice in our area for the first time.”
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