The third set of “Open Forum” questions and answers…
ForumFan asked: In terms of personnel do you have any idea why Bud Holloway has never been given a chance and been recalled from Manchester? Will he and Voynov be invited to camp?
Answer: I know that the Kings had internal discussions about Holloway. Given that the Monarchs got eliminated from the playoffs, if the Kings had advanced to the second round, it’s likely that Holloway would have been called up. In general, you could definitely make the argument that Holloway at least deserved a cup of coffee in the NHL. That said, be careful with AHL players, and I mean this with absolutely zero disrespect toward AHL players. But when you look at a 25-goal scorer in the AHL, there’s a world of difference between a 25-goal scorer in the AHL and a 25-goal scorer in the NHL. If Holloway came up to the NHL, was he going to be a top-six forward? Possibility, but you wouldn’t bet on it, would you? Oscar Moller and Dwight King were solid AHL scorers, and weren’t able to make an impact. Again, that’s not a knock on those guys. It’s just that the AHL and NHL are different worlds. Just wanted to make sure I was clear on that. Going forward, Holloway is a restricted free agent, so the Kings will have to decide whether to offer him a contract this summer. Voynov is still under contract, so he will be part of training camp.
Hat trick: When does the Kings organization believe they will make a serious run for the cup in terms of years?
Answer: I’m sorry, but I don’t really understand the question. Is a serious run different from a non-serious run? I can assure you that every player, coach and manager in the NHL starts a season believing it can win the Cup, so I’m sorry but I don’t really know how to answer the question.
LB asked: Rich, did you grow up a hockey fan? Or is it something you started doing as a sports writer and got into it then? Do you think the Kings will make a trade for a top 6 forward? Even if it involves moving Bernier?
Question: I didn’t grow up playing hockey, but I started following it after the Gretzky trade and went to a lot of games in my teens. So I was definitely a fan of the sport before I started covering it. Lombardi’s answer on the trade possibility can be found here:
Lead Feet asked: Is the NHL interested or concerned with making changes or adjustments to their video review protocol/rules?
Answer: There are no changes on the horizon, but I do think the league will continue (and should continue) to look for ways to improve goal/no-goal accuracy through video review. In terms of reviewing offsides, icing, etc., I don’t think you’ll ever see that happen. The game could easily turn into a mess if they ended up reviewing 50 neutral-zone passes every game to see if a player was offside. That’s just one of those judgment calls, one that every sport has, that is going to have to involve some human error.
Dk.lakings asked: Hey Rich I heard that there was talk of switching the NHL schedule to a more even distribution of games to be played between western and eastern conference teams. Something like playing western teams 4 times instead of 8 and playing the east teams twice like other sports. Any news on this? I think all of us would like to see that. And finally maybe the west would get more recognition and calls in the long run??
Answer: No, I have not heard anything like that seriously considered. It would help exposure, but it would hurt Western teams in terms of travel. Western teams already have it tougher than Eastern teams — simply because of geography — and asking Western teams to make yet more trips to the East is only going to make their seasons more difficult. I’m not saying it won’t happen one day, but I’m saying it doesn’t necessarily help Western teams in the long run.
kluka68 asked: 1. During the game who else besides the coach and 2 assistant coaches are on the bench with players? What are their roles? 2. When the player is injured who is coming to him from the bench? If the injury is severe is there a doctor who comes to evaluate player on the ice? If the player requires stitches or other medical attention, where it’s done? In the locker room or there is a special medical office where they can provide first medical aid. 3. When player is injured and not coming back to the game where and by whom he is taken to? Well, when it’s really bad injury obviously he is taken to the hospital, but if injury in just not that bad, than what? If this player was not accompanied by family member what happened with his car ( if he used one to get to Staples center ) 4. Can you tell us more how Bob and Jim work? Sometimes during the game they bring some info about player, is this something that they have written on the notes before the game or there is a data base which is easily accessible during the game and they can check statistics right away? During the game when Jim explains certain play he draws on the TV screen, how he does this? When they talk in front of the camera do they have a TV monitor with live picture in front of them? It will be great to see a post with videos where you will tell us some insides on Jim and Bob’s work. 5. When playoffs round is over and player line up to shake hands what they usually tell each other? Obviously the losing tem probably congratulates the wining team, but what they hear back? 6. During the game do players from the bench somehow communicate with the players on the ice? And if yes what do they tell?
Answers: 1) Depending on the team, you’ve got two or three trainers and two or three equipment guys, who will either tend to injuries or broken equipment during the game. 2) In the Kings’ case, it’s almost always head trainer Chris Kingsley on the ice. There must be at least one doctor present at every game, so he/she would tend to more serious injuries. And no, there’s no “medical office” set up, per se, but there is a training area where non-emergency situations would be handled. 3) If a player doesn’t require a hospital visit, he would just stay in the locker-room area. As for cars, I have no idea. A lot of players carpool, so I’m assuming there’s always someone available to take the wheel. 4) Bob and Jim do extensive work before the game and don’t rely on computers. They update player cards and stat sheets that they have available during the game and can easily reference. Jim uses some variation of a Telestrator to diagram plays. When they do stand-up segments in front of the camera, there is monitor in front of them, yes. 5) I’m sure there are thousands of different combinations of greetings. They probably all follow some form of “Good job.” 6) Not to any significant extent, no. Coaches might yell toward players, for quick instruction or line changes, etc.
nykingfan asked: When you asked Murray about Parse’s game 6, did he seem somewhat pissed about Parse not being honest with them, or did I read too much into that answer?
Answer: I don’t believe “not being honest” would be the proper phrase here. It’s quite likely that Parse truly believed he was ready to play. Therefore, it wasn’t a matter of being dishonest. Murray’s point, I believe, was that if a player says, “I’m ready to go,” then he better be ready to go. Murray certainly did seem irritated that he had to bench Parse, but again, I don’t think there was any suggestion of dishonesty on Parse’s part. A lack of realism? Perhaps, yes.
508KingsFan asked: Out of the twelve home games I will be attending at Staples next season, will the Kings win one of them? Is so please let me know which one.
Answer: If you start out 0-11, I’ll ask Jim Fox to wear his technicolor dreamcoat.
KingsFanFTW asked: how long are we going to have Bob Miller??
Answer: You can keep him another couple weeks, maybe, but then his wife is going to want him back.
number 6 asked: Rich, feel like I’m beating a bit of a dead horse here, but your feelings please about the forwards with regards to speed and skill. We all know that it’s lacking, but do you think it’s important as an issue to address? Two points: one is that I noticed DL make reference to San Jose’s skill level (so at least he noticed it), but how seriously do you think management takes this issue and again your personal feelings about it. Second point I make is that I’ve said on numerous posts; without the red line the game has changed post lockout, but I really wonder sometimes if management notices. There have been a number of games they won where clearly everyone could see that the Kings were rather dominated but won thanks to Quick plus a well timed goal or two.
Answer: This issue came up with a member of Kings management recently, and a good point was raised. Essentially, the point was: speed is good, but it’s what you do with the speed. Have you ever heard the phrase, “Nobody gets to the wrong spot faster than [insert player’s name].” Well, that’s the rub. Nobody ever confused Luc Robitaille with a speed-burner, but who would you rather have in the offensive zone, a slow Luc Robitaille or a speed demon who runs around like a chicken with his head cut off? Of course, everyone wants a solid mixture of both, no question. What you want most is a player who simply moves his feet in all situations and who can make good, quick decisions on the move. Foot speed and quickness are not always the same things. As for the game changing post-lockout, I’m going to guess — and please feel free to correct me if needed, as I’m not trying to put words in your mouth — that you’re suggesting Murray’s system is antiquated, post-lockout. If so, no, I don’t agree. If you look at what the Washington Capitals are doing right now, it’s very close to a mirror image of what Murray tries to get done. The question is, do you have the players to pull it off, is the message being received and is it being executed on the ice? Those questions, respectively, have to be answered by a team’s general manager, its coach and its players.
thustable asked: Rich, do you think Doughty will not turn into another Alexei Zhitnik?
Answer: Do I think he will not? Yes, I do think he will not.