blah, blah, blah! "rebuilt from scratch?!?!" check the roster for players that were here when DL got here and get back to us. (I'm tired of listing them everytime this silly rant comes up - but we'll just start with Kopitar and Quick...)
And are you actually saying the "rebuild is over" (after 3 seasons)? A rebuild gets Kings fans 12 playoff games over 2 seasons?? If so, that's pretty sad.
When you rebuild a team and they make the playoffs consecutive years then I say the rebuilding process is over. Once you proven to make the playoffs then you start building to be a cup contender.
That's pretty much how it goes.
And yeah sure Lombardi had some "proven veteran players" when he got here, but in his first season he traded away. Demetria, Gleason, Belanger, Conroy, Avery, Sopel, and Norstrom.
Can you give one example of a GM who won ZERO playoff series in six seasons, finishing up the sixth season by not even making the playoffs who was retained for a 7th season? And that doesn't even factor in that he was allowed to spend to the cap and AEG has egg on their face by marketing the team as a cup contender with the billboard crap.
And I really have no idea how you can say there are teams who have accomplished much less when the Kings themselves under DL have finished 14th, 15th, 14th, 6th, 7th, 10th (currently)
I finally got a little time to do some research:
A couple teams come to mind. Each situation is slightly different and presents it's own set of circumstances but...
New York Islanders, Garth Snow, 2006-2012 with one playoff win.
New York Rangers, Glen Sather 2000-2005 with 0 playoff wins
Carolina Hurricanes, Jim Rutherford 2006-2012 with 0 playoff wins
Columbus has been discussed.
Nashville has been discussed.
I know there are other GM's that have stuck around a while, I just hadn't realized the current list was so short.
In any case, I'm in no way sold on DL. I'm just not totally sold that he's the root of the problem and I still believe that this team is capable of turning things around. I would not really be too upset if he was replaced but I'm still worried about who his replacement could be.
We have the following prospects that I believe will be NHL players. NHL players who can and should step in and fill roles with strong motivated as well as talented core's who want nothing more than to make it in the NHL and play for the Kings.
Up front in our top 6:
Tyler Toffoli I have spent more time then I should have following TT this year and I can honestly say that he is easily twice the player this year then he was last year and the importance of that is in the area's that he has developed in.
His skating is vastly improved. Still needs a little work but he is skating without the puck much much better then he has in the past. His defencive game has come a long way in so far as his positioning and his awareness. He still has room to grow there as well but he has come a very long way from last season showing a willingness to learn and an eagerness to make it to the NHL as soon as possible.
Linden Vey is doing what I said he would do before the start of this season, he is playing smart up tempo hockey and making the most of his chances. He has great hands and sees the ice well. Is he a top 6 center or the perfect 3rd line center? Time will tell but he is an NHL caliber player.
Maxim (Moishie) Kitsyn is either going to be a Franzen type of power forward who loves contact and is most effective in front of the net or he is going to be an excellent 3rd line grinder with game breaking skills. The reason for the discrepancy between the two styles and potential outcomes is that Maxim is an enigmatic character of a kid and when he wants to be a game breaker he is as well as when he wants to be a beast he is.
He has NHL caliber skills and must return to N.A. this coming season or we could lose him. He has a couple of other talents that he can make a living with even though hockey is his first love. He did what he had to do in honoring his contract this past season but I am hoping that he simply comes over to train this summer and remains behind. He is a LW and I see him as the best in our system but also among the top ten LW prospects out there when he wants to be.
I am not saying he is a head case who cant decide what he wants to do, more that he is talented enough to where he drifts in and out of both styles of play. He will likely develop one style or the other in Manchester but either way I see him playing in our top 9 within the next three seasons.
Bottom 6 hitter who has hands and can be an effective two way player. Think Clifford with a bit more smarts allowing him better opportunity to provide more offence. I like the way that Andy lines up his hits. He looks allot like Phil Sykes in the way you could almost draw a line between point A and point B. NHL bottom 6er who can be effective as a top 6 forward from time to time. He might be able to make the jump next year and in fact I think he will but if not he will develop his game in Manchester and be an effective call up.
He has the offencive skills to play in the top 6 with the Kings and can be an effective two way wing, his only problem is that he is still learning how to control himself and keep his head focused on doing what is needed instead of looking for revenge or try to take out a player with one hit instead of focusing on his game.
I had always thought he should be a 3rd line powerhouse for us but maybe just maybe he could be effective in our top 6 if he can keep improving. I think he is ready to make the jump and that could be the reason for his streaky play but I am not sold on that notion.
Either way Kozun is without a doubt an NHL caliber prospect. How effective is up to him but he has the skills and is ready to start playing his way onto the Kings today.
We have at least 3 more kids who are going to be NHL caliber prospects over the next couple of seasons but you get the picture, we are far from without up front in my opinion. On D we have two kids who are NHL ready right now and would be good enough to very good.
Our system is in good shape, with Toffi and Vey we are in great shape but only time will be enough to give some of us the same amount of conviction that I have in their potential for NHL success.