From the “you have to be kidding” me file, Helene Elliott of the LA Times brings us this nugget of greatness. As if we needed yet another reason for the Lighthouse Project to be approved on Long Island, now it seems as though the team is charging announcers for water during broadcasts. Maybe Nassau County can pass a bill with voters to set aside $200 per year for visiting broadcasters? Maybe they can build a new arena with drinking fountains and refillable water bottles?
Regardless, here’s the direct story:
“Kings radio play-by-play announcer Nick Nickson, thirsty after constantly talking through two periods, asked a technician in the press box to bring him some water. Sorry, the guy replied, he’d need some money because the Islanders charge $1 for any beverages consumed after the $10 pressbox meal.”
The Islanders have been through plenty over the last few years, so they last thing they need is more bad press. But come on; is this really what it’s come to? I guess we shouldn’t be surprised when we’re talking about a team who is spending $41.1 million on their roster when the salary cap floor is $43.4 (thank you Alexei Yashin buyout).
In related news, you can expect the Islanders to start charging organ music and scoreboard updates.
We should be talking about how the Islanders have won 5 of their last 6 games and have been putting a truly exciting product on the ice lately. We should be talking about how they dominated the red-hot Los Angeles Kings. We should be talking about how they’re coming into their own with players like Michael Grabner, John Tavares, Frans Nielsen, Kyle Okposo, Josh Bailey, and…
Excuse me, I need to clear my throat. Let me grab a dollar bill.
The Los Angeles Kings may owe Mike Richards money until 2031 (seriously), but in settling his grievance, the team and player more or less get to turn the page.
Not before Kings GM Dean Lombardi shares his sometimes startling perspective, though.
Lombardi has a tendency to be candid, especially in the press release-heavy world of sports management. Even by his standards, his account of Richards’ “destructive sprial” is a staggering read from the Los Angeles Times’ Lisa Dillman.
“Without a doubt, the realization of what happened to Mike Richards is the most traumatic episode of my career,” Lombardi said in a written summation he provided to the Los Angeles Times. “At times, I think that I will never recover from it. It is difficult to trust anyone right now – and you begin to question whether you can trust your own judgment. The only thing I can think of that would be worse would be suspecting your wife of cheating on you for five years and then finding out in fact it was true.”
Lombardi provides plenty of eyebrow-raising statements to Dillman, including:
- He believed he “found his own Derek Jeter” in Richards, a player who “at one time symbolized everything that was special about the sport.”
- Lombardi remarked that “his production dropped 50 percent and the certain ‘it’ factor he had was vaporizing in front of me daily.”
- The Kings GM believes that he was “played” by Richards.
Again, it’s a powerful read that you should soak in yourself, even if you’re unhappy with the way the Kings handled the situation.
Maybe the most pressing of many lingering questions is: will we get to hear Richards’ side of the story?
Despite owning two Stanley Cup rings, there are a healthy number of people who aren’t wild about Jonathan Quick.
Those people might feel validated through the Los Angeles Kings’ first two games, as he followed a rough loss to the San Jose Sharks with a true stinker against the Arizona Coyotes on Friday.
Sometimes a goalie has a bad night stats-wise, yet his team is as much to blame as anything else. You can probably pin this one on Quick, who allowed four goals on just 14 shots through the first two periods.
Things died down in the final frame, but let’s face it; slowing things down is absolutely the Coyotes’ design with a 4-1 lead (which ultimately resulted in a 4-1 win).
A soft 1-0 goal turned out to be a sign of things to come:
Many expected the Kings to roar into this second game after laying an egg in their opener. Instead, the Coyotes exploited Quick’s struggles for a confidence-booster, which included key prospect Max Domi scoring a goal and an assist.
It’s worth mentioning that Mike Smith looked downright fantastic at times, only drawing more attention to Quick’s struggles.
After a troubled summer and a failed 2014-15 season, Los Angeles was likely eager to start things off the right way.
Instead, they instead will likely focus on the fact that they merely dropped two (ugly) games.