With the series extended, Kings weigh in on Frozen Fury experience
What has happened in Vegas will stay in Vegas. The Kings and MGM Grand reached an agreement to extend the Frozen Fury series through the 2016 preseason.
Though Kings President, Business Operations Luc Robitaille described the agreement as an “easy decision” in a statement, saying “our fans flock to Vegas for these games and make an entire weekend out of it,” Darryl Sutter would like to see an adjustment in the schedule so that the team isn’t faced with a back-to-back set so close to the start of the season.
“I don’t like it being this late in camp,” he said. “It’s not the right situation, quite honest, because you have to declare a roster, and if we wouldn’t have gotten the first game of the season moved, we’d have been playing Tuesday. Playing back-to-back to finish so close to the regular season is not ideal.”
Otherwise, “as long as the ice is good,” Sutter didn’t have any qualms against the setting of the popular exhibition games.
“It was OK this morning, but we were only out there [briefly],” Jarret Stoll said of the ice condition. “It’ll be a little different tonight in the game. If they’re going to practice on it, and there’s something going on before the game, too, I think, so it’s going to be pretty chewed up, maybe, but it’s the same for both teams. You’ve just got to figure it out, keep things simple, don’t try to overpass or overthink.”
The players appear to enjoy the Frozen Fury experience, with Stoll stating that much of the team got together at a craps table on Thursday night. According to Tyler Toffoli, who first visited Las Vegas following the 2012-13 season, “I don’t think the craps table was too hot,” before recalling that he thought a couple players may have come out in the black.
For Stoll, it’s more about the camraderie. “It’s fun to just get everyone around.”
“If guys are winning, they’re rolling or whatever. I’m not much of a gambler, but it’s good to play a little bit, especially with your teammates. It’s fun. But we have to get ready for the season. There’s two games left, and we’ve got to make sure that we’re here for the right reasons, too, and get our game in shape and in order and go after it,” he said.
It’s “just like any other road trip,” according to Jake Muzzin – though one in which he was able to sit down at a slot machine for a few minutes with Dwight King.
“I don’t really know how to play [craps], so I just watch,” he said.
The excitement surrounding the event and the preparation for the season far outweighs any gambling associated with spending several days in Las Vegas, according to King.
“I’m not a cards player at all, actually. But it is obviously different. There’s no other place like this in the league, so it’s exciting,” King said. “Obviously guys who do play, I think a couple guys had some good luck last night, and some maybe not. But it’s a fun place to be.
The Kings have certainly had their share of luck at Frozen Fury.
Los Angeles is 10-3-2 all-time in Frozen Fury games, with tonight’s game against the New York Rangers marking only the third game that wasn’t contested against the Colorado Avalanche.
All-time Frozen Fury Results:
2012: Did Not Play
2011: KINGS 1 Colorado 4
2010: KINGS 3 Colorado 2
2009: KINGS 5 Colorado 3
2008: KINGS 3 Colorado 4 (SO)
2007: KINGS 3 Colorado 2 (SO)
2006: KINGS 3 Colorado 2
2005: KINGS 1 Colorado 1 (OT)
2004: Did Not Play
2003: KINGS 3 Colorado 1
2002: KINGS 6 Colorado 5
2001: KINGS 4 San Jose 3
2000: KINGS 4 Colorado 5
1999: KINGS 4 Phoenix 0
1998: KINGS 3 Colorado 2
KINGS 4 Colorado 5
1997: KINGS 4 Colorado 3 (OT)