As we look ahead to the start of training camp in September, we are anxious and excited to build a dynamic roster, committed to returning to the top of the NHL.
As President of the LA Kings, I will make every effort to ensure our team is contending each and every year for the Stanley Cup.
Our hockey operations team, led by Rob Blake and John Stevens, believe in the collective make-up of this group. Since taking over back in April, they have already made improvements highlighted by significant changes to our coaching staff that will emphasize creativity, while focusing on implementing an effective offensive approach, as well as maintaining our stalwart defensive game.
Our culture remains strong and our belief that we belong at the top of the NHL has only been strengthened by these changes and our attention and focus on the following:
- New multi-year contract extensions for Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson, both of whom are entering their prime
- A core group in Anze Kopitar, Drew Doughty, Jonathan Quick, Jeff Carter, Toffoli, Pearson, Dustin Brown, Alec Martinez and Jake Muzzin that we believe is as strong, proven and dynamic as any other group in the NHL
- Full recovery and renewed health for Quick, Toffoli and Marian Gaborik, and the expectation that several key players will return to their productive ways
- Upgrades in depth and skill with the off-season additions of Michael Cammalleri, Christian Folin, Oscar Fantenberg and Alex Iafallo. Plus, a significant upgrade to our depth in goal with the signings of Darcy Kuemper and highly-touted goaltender Cal Petersen
- The promise of young, emerging players such as Adrian Kempe, Jonny Brodzinski, Paul LaDue, Derek Forbort and Kevin Gravel
- Additional cap space and a full commitment from ownership to spend to the cap
- A newly created coaching role for NHL-great Pierre Turgeon, who will specifically focus on helping implement an up-tempo, attacking offensive style of play
As it relates specifically to our coaching staff, these new additions to our staff will implement new strategies allowing us to evolve with the changing landscape in the NHL without sacrificing our established brand of hockey that we feel positions us to contend for more Stanley Cups.
Dave Lowry is a man of tremendous character and leadership with more than 1,000 NHL games played on his resume. Don Nachbaur is an NHL and coaching veteran with a wealth of knowledge and innovative ideas. Both will help challenge our players daily to execute a new style of play that emphasizes speed and assertive entry, while maintaining a commitment to our strong defensive philosophy and overall team toughness.
Our new additions in goal add high-end skill to a stable with which Bill Ranford and Dusty Imoo can continue their successful track record of developing into NHL-caliber goaltenders.
The addition of Turgeon, a five-time NHL All Star who as a player was one of the most dynamic offensive players for over a decade, is new for the Kings as he will be strictly focused on serving in an offensive coordinator role.
From an experience standpoint, we remain committed to delivering a fan-friendly environment and a world-class in-game entertainment experience. LA Kings games will continue to engage all of our fans inside STAPLES Center and through all of our content platforms.
But most important is the team that takes the ice each night and the results they ultimately achieve.
All of these changes have been made with our fans in mind. Your passion and dedication to us demands that our actions begin with accountability and a commitment to the expectations we have created.
Our core group has been built for the long-term because we expect them to contend each year. Our mission is to play winning LA Kings hockey each and every night, in a manner that keeps you on the edge of your seat and delivers thrills and moments that ultimately bring you to your feet.
I hope you will join us for this upcoming season which can't come soon enough!
Go Kings Go!