10 Days of Dustin continues and today, we’re focusing now on the on-ice accolades and performance.
From February 1 through February 10, we’ll have a Dustin Brown themed post each day, leading into the Kings next home game on February 11, which will be one of the season’s most memorable. The Kings will retire Dustin Brown’s number 23 on that night, with a statue unveiling as well, in what’s sure to be a special and momentous occasion for those – including many Insiders! – who are able to attend.
Yesterday’s article was the first to integrate quotes from Dustin’s former teammates, coaches and executives, who knew the person and player as well as anyone from the hockey community. Those individuals all reflected on the man most know as Brownie in different ways, as a person, a player, a leader and as a legend. Today’s article takes a look at the second item on that list – the player. Using quotes collected from the 2012 reuninon over the summer (special thanks to Jesse Cohen of All The Kings Men, as well as the Kings Production Team), as well as in the locker room and at press conferences over the last couple of years, the list below is a small sampling of what was said about Dustin Brown, the player.
Jaret Anderson-Dolan, Kings Forward
Just how he showed up every day, no matter what he was playing through. He obviously had a long career, so towards the end there, obviously had some bumps and bruises but never complained and played hard every night. Watching that as a young guy was definitely good for me.
Jeff Carter, Former Teammate, Current Pittsburgh Penguins Center
He was so well-rounded, I think. From that 12-to-15 year range, he did it all for us. He scored big goals, he made big hits and he’d fight when he had to. He just kind of played every position and every role and did it to a tee for us.
Kyle Clifford, Former Teammate, Current Toronto Maple Leafs Forward
Just a quiet guy that comes in every day, same level, same intensity and you want to be like Brownie and that’s what he gets out of the young guys. You look up to him and you see what he’s been able to do throughout his career, how he conducts himself. As a young guy, I looked up and I said I’ve got to be like Dustin Brown every day.
Jim Fox, Kings TV Analyst, Kings Alumni
With his style, how did he play that many games, crushing his body. When you hit someone, you’re taking a toll on your own body too and that’s his leadership style, I’m going through you with the puck. In his first year, I think there were times where Dustin Brown would dump the puck into the corner just to get a hit, he just wanted to smash you on every shift.
Colin Fraser, Former Teammate
Maybe it’s not vocally talked about, but when [opponents] played, they know he’s coming, so there’s a little bit of that hesitation, a little bit of maybe fear that he can put into guys and he played it clean, for me. He’s not a guy that ran around and ran guys from behind or late or whatever. For a guy that played hard, he played straight up too.
Anze Kopitar, Kings Forward He had the knack to make a big play when it really matters the most, whether that was getting in front of a puck, hitting somebody or making a play in the last minute of the game, just so we could win by one goal. He was on the ice in every situation, and rightfully so, he was very, very trustworthy. There were those highlights of his hits and everything, but he was scoring some very big goals for us too.
Rob Laird, LA Kings Scout
Just an honest, young hockey player and a very determined guy. What’s really unique for me, was with the style he played, to have that longevity, that’s very hard to do. Dustin played a really heavy hockey game, driving the net, hitting at every opportunity, that wears you down. To do that for that many seasons, that’s what I’ll remember about him.
Jonathan Quick, Kings Goaltender Every day, he didn’t change his routine, come in, work, get the work he needed off the ice and then he go out on the ice and work. He wasn’t complaining about anything ever and then, obviously, you see what he does in games with his physicality and his skill, and just kind of pulled it all together for the games. I don’t think it’s just any one particular day that something stands out, but it’s just over the course of his career, you see how he handles himself every single day.
Jarret Stoll, Former Teammate, Kings Player Development On the ice, as a player, just how powerful he was. I knew what kind of player he was to play against and it’s exactly what I saw coming in on day one. As a player, how powerful he was, skating, hitting, just that typical power forward in the game, like a Cam Neely type someone that’s so important to a team. Especially in that era, physicality, he was leaving the league there with whatever 250, 280 hits over course of a season. That was just the type of guy that Brownie was.
Darryl Sutter, Former Head Coach, Current Calgary Flames Head Coach
I’ll tell you this, Brownie was underrated as a player, if you look at the playoff games and playoff history, Brownie is one of the best players ever. He doesn’t get much credit for it, he gets credit because he’s had a long career and Stanley Cups, but he was a great playoff player. In fact, one of those playoff runs, I believe Brownie was tied with Kopi for the scoring race in the playoffs. In regular seasons, guys have ebbs and flows in their games, but Brownie in playoff time, every shift, every game he was right there. When the series was over, you know he’d given it all, he he’d left it all out there and he played hurt through it all, and the playoffs were his type of game. So Brian’s a playoff player
Another edition of people saying nice things about Dustin Brown, this time as a player. Over the coming days, we’ll share some of what was said about Brown the leader and Brown the legend, as well as a couple of first-hand testamonials to come.