Lombardi recalls history, looks ahead in development - LA Kings Insider

Marian Gaborik scored 14 goals in 26 games in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Only Wayne Gretzky, who scored 15 goals as part of a 40-point 1993 run, had scored more in one postseason as a Los Angeles King.

Similar to the 2012 team, a high profile goal scorer was acquired via trade and provided healthy balance among the forward lines. Acquiring Gaborik (and the Blue Jackets’ retention of half of his salary) in exchange for Matt Frattin and two second round picks) was “a good deal for both teams,” as General Manager Dean Lombardi noted. “It’s a classic case, whether it was Jack Johnson, and it’s the same thing.”

“The similarity here was what New Jersey did with Mogilny. There are a lot of similarities,” Lombardi continued. Alexander Mogilny was 31 when he was a late-season acquisition by the Devils in 2000. He won the Stanley Cup that year and posted a 43-goal season en route to an Eastern Conference title in 2001.

“Jersey had an identity, and they got Mogilny to bring in that element, and he fit right in. So I go back and look at a little history, and that’s kind of the methodology. And Columbus is at a different stage. They’re obviously on the track. They’re clearly one of the hardest teams in the league to play against. So they made a good deal, too.”

The 32-year-old Gaborik was among the principal figures in the team’s postseason offensive surge, though the Kings remain a team so strongly built from the ground up and with a young core that has grown together.

“Well, you know, I kind of said this after the first one. The ability of this team to continue to grow isn’t going to from acquisitions. It’s going to be on the inside,” Lombardi said. “People overlook, I think a lot, how young Doughty was last time, Kopitar, Brown was still growing. Carter was just entering his prime. Jake Muzzin, Martinez, Clifford, Nolan, King – all these kids, you look at the age distribution chart on ‘em, there was tremendous upside here. Now, the trick for them and the coaches was to not let ‘em get complacent and keep pushing them to reach their potential. So the emergence of Doughty – I mean, he’s only going to get better. He’s not done. He’s 24 years old. Ray Bourque didn’t hit his prime ‘til 27. Same thing with Kopitar.”

“Darryl sets the tone. That’s the thing in coaching. You can have all the systems and everything else. That’s the minimum for the job description. But his ability to keep ‘em right here and push them in the right way, and like I said, don’t get too high, don’t get too low. He [had] an eight-game losing streak during the season. They were right there, and then you see that when they’re down three games to none, three-to-one. So Darryl and Johnny Stevens and Davis Payne and Billy Ranford – they do a tremendous job making sure those kids took the next step. And I think there’s more in a lot of them, too. They’re not done. So hopefully we can keep them together and they continue to grow.”

2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Four

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Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.