Rob Blake, the all-time leader in games played, goals, assists and points by a Kings defenseman, will have his No. 4 jersey retired during a pre-game ceremony at Staples Center prior to the Saturday, January 17 Kings-Ducks game.
Blake’s jersey will become the sixth jersey retired by the Kings, joining Marcel Dionne’s No. 16, Dave Taylor’s No. 18, Luc Robitaille’s No. 20, Rogie Vachon’s No. 30 and Wayne Gretzky’s No. 99 as the jerseys hung from the rafters at Staples Center. The ceremony will follow his Hockey Hall of Fame induction by two months.
A ferocious open ice hitter with a blistering, accurate shot, Blake made his Los Angeles debut after being selected in the fourth round (70th overall) out of Bowling Green State University in 1988. A veteran of 1,270 regular season and 146 playoff games with the Kings, Avalanche and Sharks, the Simcoe, Ontario native totaled 161 goals, 333 assists and 494 points in 805 total games with Los Angeles. The Kings’ captain from 1996-01 and in 2007-08, Blake was named to the NHL’s All-Rookie Team in 1991 after a 12-goal, 46-point season and posted four goals and 10 points during the team’s run to the 1993 Stanley Cup Final. He was the 1998 Norris Trophy Winner, a two-time winner of the Kings Most Valuable Player “Bill Libby Memorial Award” (1997-98 and 1999-00), a six-time winner of the Kings Outstanding Defenseman Award (1990-91, 1991-92, 1992-93, 1993-94, 1997-98 and 1999-00) and was a four-time NHL All-Star while with Los Angeles.
Los Angeles’ Vice President / Assistant General Manager, Blake was named as a part of the 2014 Hockey Hall of Fame selection class with Dominik Hasek, Mike Modano and Avalanche teammate Peter Forsberg.
Robitaille, whose No. 20 jersey was retired by the Kings on January 20, 2007, was the last player to have his jersey retired by the club.
Kings retired jerseys, in chronological order:
30: Rogie Vachon, G – February 14, 1985
16: Marcel Dionne, C – November 8, 1990
18: Dave Taylor, RW – April 3, 1995
99: Wayne Gretzky, C – October 9, 2002
20: Luc Robitaille, LW – January 20, 2007
Other Kings to have worn No. 4 at some point include Jim Fox, Eric Germain, Grant Ledyard, Ken Hammond, Russ Anderson, Jerry Korab, Randy Holt, Brian Glennie, Dave Hutchinson, Gilles Marotte, Dale Hoganson, Jim Murray, Jacques Lemieux and Brent Hughes.