Thread: Prospect Info: Kings sit at #1
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05-20-2011, 07:23 PM
JT Dutch*
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Originally Posted by KINGS17 View Post
Well, I can tell you this. The kind of approach that gives you one excellent chance involves much more risk than the one that provides multiple opportunities. It also leads to the kind of bust we all witnessed in the post-Gretzky years.
... It didn't have nearly as much to do with how that team was built as much as it had to do with the owner defrauding banks and not having anywhere near the money he claimed to have. THAT is what was most responsible for the bust in the mid- to late-90s: poor ownership.

Don't kid yourself into thinking that the Kings were building some great young team and all of a sudden the trade for Gretzky and the subsequent deals in that era ruined all of that. That's bull.

The Kings had four young players forming their core in 1988 - Carson, Robitaille, Nicholls, and Duchesne. They only traded one of the four in 1988, and that was for the greatest player of all time. Then they traded Nicholls - who was 28 at the time of the trade - for Sandstrom and Granato, who were both 25. They traded Ken Baumgartner and Hubie McDonough, both 26, for 24-year-old Mikko Makela.

The Kings developed three young defensemen during the Gretzky era. Blake, Sydor, and Zhitnik. The Kings developed a second line center during this era, too - Todd Elik.

Sure, the Kings made some deals for older players, but in nearly every case those deals worked out well for them. Elik was dealt for Randy Gilhen, who was in turn dealt for Corey Millen, a superior player to Elik. Also in the Elik deal, the Kings got Charlie Huddy and the pick to acquire Zhitnik. Makela was traded for Mike Donnelly, a superior player. Duchesne was dealt for Kurri, which made sense given that the Kings were breaking in young defensemen, and Dave Taylor was at the age where he couldn't be expected to be a top six winger any longer. The Kings traded Mark Fitzpatrick for Kelly Hrudey, a superior goalie.

There was a balance to the Kings' acquisitions during that time. They were bringing in some experienced players, but they were trading for and plugging in younger players too.

Sure, they lost four first rounders to acquire Gretzky and Coffey. Can you remember the players that were selected with those picks? Martin Rucinsky, Jason Bowen, Nick Stajduhar, and Jason Miller. HORRIFIC loss right there.

That 92-93 team that won the Campbell Conference was a very good team. They faced the Flames and the Canucks in the playoffs - two strong teams, and pretty much rolled them over. They had enough left in them to keep playing well for a few more years, if the Kings had been allowed to keep that roster intact. Instead, they had to strip it because of the ownership issues. Coffey, gone. Sandstrom, gone. Millen, gone. All within a year. Granato got hurt and was never the same player again. And that was the beginning of the end for that team.

Originally Posted by KINGS17 View Post
I don't think there was anything wrong with him, but the Oilers pretty much showed that he wasn't the singular glue that was holding it together.
... What does this even mean??? It's a team game. He was the best player and MVP of the league on four Cup teams, and won two Smythe trophies. What more did he need to do, in your eyes?

The first four Edmonton Cups were dominant teams with huge regular seasons that were punctuated by strong playoff performances. The fifth was a case of a team that wasn't dominant at all, but got hot at the right time and won as the underdogs. I don't see where that reflects badly on Gretzky in any way.

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