Here’s the fourth set of Open Forum questions and answers…
Barrie G asked: 1) Which player(s) on the team is/are the biggest “foodie(s)” and has the refined and diverse palate?
2) What is said player(s) top LA restaurant to dine in and road restaurant (with city) to dine in?
3) Who’s the first guy on the team hunting down a cheeseburger on the road? and the for the finale at number four:
4) Taking a quick poll of some (or all) of the team on two SoCal icons:
Pick one, In N Out or Carls Jr?, and which burger?
Answer: This is tough for me to answer, because I don’t really have a good handle on which players do what on the road. When we get into the next city, usually well after midnight, it’s always about hunting down the hotel-room pillow, not a cheeseburger! After that, my interaction with them is really limited. I’ll see guys in the hotel lobby, or perhaps walking down a street, but I don’t have a great idea of how they spend their time, and I try to respect that as their private time. I do know, in general, that Sean O’Donnell is probably the biggest “foodie.” I believe that he even took some culinary classes during the lockout. The In-N-Out of Carl’s poll is a good one. Or perhaps “best burger” in general!
Kris asked: Ok, I got a “fluff” question. How many of the players are planning on going to the awards weather they are up for one or not. I could use more Kings autographs (currant or retired) than the Kelly Hrudey one I got out here last year.
Answer: I’m sure that all the nominated players will be there, but I can’t imagine that a lot of non-nominated players will show up. Were there some there last year? I wasn’t aware that any went.
Lanny McDonald’s `Stache asked: 1.) Where do you see Oscar Moller fitting in next year? 2.) Will Justin Williams possibly outscore POS this year despite missing all those games?? Your prediction?
Answers: 1) I like Oscar a lot, but in order to play anywhere with the Kings, he’s going to need to show he can deal with the physical NHL game, and give it back also. It’s hard to ever see him behind a part of that Handzus “shutdown” line. He does have the skill to play a second-line role, but only if his body can hold up. It should be a very important season for Moller coming up. 2) Did I read that O’Sullivan isn’t playing because he lost a fingernail? Odd. If the Kings’ first line gets going again, there’s a chance Williams could pass O’Sullivan in points.
Bobby Scribe asked: What is your favorite thing about http://www.lakingsnews.com?
Answer: The writers, of course!
teddeshred asked: Randy Jones has been TERRIBLE!! I used to defend him, because I didn’t feel he was getting a fair shake, but ever since his concussion, he seems hesitant and keeps coughing up the puck. Why don’t they put in Harrold? He is dependable and is not afraid to go in the corner, even when he knows he is going to get cleaned out!
As far as goaltending, what do you think the Kings are going to do? I think if they left Bernier as Quick’s backup, it would be an unnecessary distraction for Quick. He has played solid and proved himself, but what do you do next year? Who do you think Chicago is going to give us for one of our awesome goaltenders?
Answers: 1) One of the first questions of the forum was similar, and my thought is that the players you’re talking about, Jones and Harrold, play different games, although Harrold is closer to Jones’ style that Drewiske is. It’s about the balance the Kings might be looking for on defense, but clearly if a player is costing your team goals, it’s something that has to be seriously looked at. 2) I’ve been saying this for at least a year, and I’ll continue saying it. The Kings have been looking for ONE young homegrown goalie for 40-plus years, and now that they appear to have at least two, people are talking about trading one? I really, really don’t get it. Goalie is the most important position you can stabilize. I understand the sexy appeal of wanting to trade Bernier, but it’s not wise. If a player is a real competitor, he won’t mind competition, and Quick is the most competitive guy on the team. If the Kings are wise, they’ll wait and see how this whole thing shakes out.
`11 Cup winners asked: Do the coaches or players ever get apologies or acknowledgement from referees after they have the chance to see the replay and realize they really blew a call? This is assuming there is a referee capable of thinking they actually blew a call as opposed to being the arrogant a-holes they seem to be.
Answer: I’d have to agree with AZ King’s reply. A ref saying “I wasn’t looking at the play” — as the ref did yesterday with the interference non-call — is as close as you’re going to get to “I messed up.” Certainly they know, in their minds, that they messed up, and that the coach knows they messed up, but publicly they need to maintain that “control.”
Kingsfan4life asked: During the playoffs will the games be broadcasted on fsw? If so and if the kings play Vancouver will they be shown here, since they weren’t shown here all year?
Answer: The broadcast schedule would depend on which games the national rights-holders (NBC and Versus) wanted to broadcast. Other games would be handled locally by FS West, and in the case of playoffs, they would certainly “use their resources” — or whatever that e-mail response said — to cover playoff games in Canada.
YeahWhatever asked: How do the boys rebound after they lose? Do they re-focus on positives as a group (e.g., how far they’ve come/exceeded all expectations), or do they just go home all bitter and work it out for themselves?
Answer: I really don’t know. Based on my very limited time being a part of teams in my life, I’d say that every player handles it differently. Some will be more outwardly disappointed, some will keep it in and some will let it go. Other than the quotes they give, it’s not really possible for me to determine how they’re feeling after a loss.
YeahWhatever asked: How many of the Kings are married and/or with (small) children?
Answer: The only players I know to be married are Brown, Smyth, Ivanans, Williams, O’Donnell, Scuderi and Harrold, I don’t know of any other married players. That’s going off their biographies. Other than Brown, whose second child was born during last season, I don’t know of any other players besides Quick that would have very young kids.
Mark C. asked: Rich, since you have no emotional stake in the Kings success (wink, wink), what is your gut feeling on how well the Kings will do in the Playoffs this year (first round exit, second round exit, etc.)?
Answer: There was a similar question a bit earlier, and I think it’s all about matchups. Is it a first-round series against Phoenix or Vancouver? Because that’s a big, big difference to me. Talent-wise, I do think the Kings have the ability to win a couple rounds, but it’s all about the opponent.
kings4queens asked: I know it sounds crazy, but the Kings have held their own with the Sharks, Coyotes, Avs (so far), and beaten the Caps, Penguins and Sabres. To me, it seems like their biggest obstacles are the Red Wings, Canucks and Preditors. If they could learn how to beat those teams, do you think they could be an upset team if they get beyond those teams for the Stanley Cup?
Answer: Well, I think there are two “classes” of teams in the West. There’s the teams you would consider “favorites,” such as San Jose, Chicago, Vancouver and even Detroit, given its history. Then there’s the “underdogs,” such as Phoenix, the Kings and Colorado. Nashville is somewhere in the middle. So any of those teams — Kings, Yotes, Avs — would be an “upset team” if they could knock off the big guns. The Kings have just a good a chance as the other two, but I don’t necessarily think they have a better chance. Again, I think it’s all about matchups.
ducksuck asked: CAN YOU GIVE ME A UPDATE ON HICKEY AND HOW HIS RECOVERY IS GOING?
Answer: His recovery isn’t as fast as Loktionov’s and Lewis’ recovery. There’s a chance he could be back for the end of the regular season and/or the playoffs, but not yet.