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This Date in NHL History

July 24: Robitaille returns to Kings

Plus: Rangers acquire Nedved from Blues for Tikkanen, Lidster, coaching rights to Keenan

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

THIS DATE IN HISTORY: July 24

2003: Left wing Luc Robitaille signs on for a third stint with the Los Angeles Kings.

For Robitaille, a ninth-round choice by Los Angeles (No. 171) in the 1984 NHL Draft, it's a return to the city where his NHL career began in 1986; he scores 45 goals as a rookie and has at least 44 in each of his first eight seasons with the Kings. He's traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1994 but comes back to Los Angeles in 1997 and scores at least 36 goals in three of his four seasons before signing a two-year contract with the Detroit Red Wings in 2001.

But after scoring 30 goals and helping the Red Wings win the Stanley Cup in 2002, his ice time is reduced in 2002-03 and he returns to the Kings for a third time. Robitaille scores 22 goals for Los Angeles in 2003-04 and leads it with 51 points, then retires after scoring 15 goals in 2005-06. He scores 35 or more goals 11 times, all with the Kings. His 668 goals and 1,394 points are still NHL records for a left wing.

Robitaille rejoins the Kings again as president of business operations in May 2007. He is inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.

Video: Luc Robitaille highest-scoring LW in history

 

MORE MOMENTS

1975: Forward Jamie Langenbrunner, a Stanley Cup winner with the Dallas Stars and New Jersey Devils, is born in Cloquet, Minnesota. Langenbrunner, Dallas' second-round pick (No. 35) in the 1993 NHL Draft, joins the Stars for good in 1996; three years later, he helps them win the Cup. He's traded to New Jersey on March 19, 2002, and is part of the Devils' championship team in 2003. Langenbrunner finishes his NHL career after playing four games for the St. Louis Blues in 2012-13 with 663 points (243 goals, 420 assists) in 1,109 NHL games.

 

1994: The New York Rangers acquire center Petr Nedved from the St. Louis Blues, who receive forward Esa Tikkanen and defenseman Doug Lidster in a trade approved by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman that allows Rangers coach Mike Keenan to become coach and general manager of the Blues. It comes less than six weeks after the Keenan-coached Rangers win the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1940.

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