In My Own Words - Dustin Brown (part 4 of 4)
Fans can relive the greatest season in Los Angeles Kings history with The Official Story of the 2012 Stanley Cup Champion Los Angeles Kings. The commemorative book contains key details and images from the run, a foreword by Luc Robitaille, an introduction from Bob Miller and an afterward from Dustin Brown. Also included is an exclusive DVD with Bob Miller and Jim Fox announcing the Cup-clinching Game 6.
In recent weeks LAKings.com has been offering up various chapters in the book on-line. Brown -- who had one goal and two assists in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final – also contributed a great deal to the book and here now are parts of those stories (some of which did not make the final edition of the book).
We hope you enjoy this read on LAKings.com as Brown, in his own words, shares his story on trade rumors one year ago, his thoughts prior to Game 6 against the Devils and teammate Jonathan Quick earning the Conn Smythe Trophy in the final part of this special four-part series.
Sometimes you just need a kick in the tail and hearing you're name out there, it definitely motivated me. I'd been a King and wanted to stay a King. Then there are questions about my leadership capabilities and if I was the right fit for leading this team to where we wanted to go. When you hear about that it gives you a kick but it also makes you look in the mirror and ask, ‘Are you doing everything in your power to be the best you can and are you doing everything in your power to help this team win it?’
It was a hard couple of days because I thought I was the right fit and the right guy, but at the same time there were things that I needed to do better. I elevated my play in the final 20 games or so and I think that gave me a lot of confidence going into the playoffs and go into Vancouver, which statistically I think was probably my best series. Then you have the impact hit on Sedin, and I just really felt in my element that time of year.
The way I play is probably best made for the playoffs with the intensity and the way that I play the game physically. It’s hard to do that for 82 games, but when you're taking it a game at a time for 20 games, where everything is on the line, then I think it really suits my game well. I found a way to score big goals at big times and that was another key to our success as a team. It wasn’t just me, but I scored a lot of big goals and you just kind of get into a rhythm.
I remember my last goal I scored was Game 1 in Phoenix and then I went a long time without really producing, but I remember I had some impact plays against Phoenix. Going into the final series versus Jersey, I was a little nervous but I'd been playing good hockey and I remember those first two games—to be blunt—I didn’t feel good physically. My skating felt slow out there, it was hot and I just wasn't playing the same game. I wasn't having an impact or making the plays. I was actually costing our team on the defensive side of the puck, which was very uncharacteristic of me. To some extent, I struggled throughout that series.
I remember sitting there before Game Six and thinking that this was an opportunity for someone to step up, and up to that point I hadn’t really had an impact on the Jersey series. Big players step up at big times, and it was an opportunity more than anything else. I didn’t feel the pressure that I had to do something, but it was more than that. There was an opportunity to do something special, both collectively and individually, and to lead your team by example.
I remember after we scored those first two goals in the first period, that was kind of probably my defining moment for me personally as the leader of this team. I think there was pressure on us as a team to win the game, and I just went out there and played my game and happened to score and help my team win.
That was probably the most excited I've ever been scoring goals and obviously Game Six on home ice for the Stanley Cup was one of those defining moments for me personally where I had an opportunity to show everyone what I was made of, and to make the best of an opportunity where I hadn't been playing well in the series to really make my mark.
I remember coming in after the first period and we're up 3-0. For me personally, I had a really good period and I just had to get out of the room. I was too nervous and too amped up. Part of it was the idea that we're up 3-0 and we're going to win the Stanley Cup. Also, it had been a long, long time for me personally, are there were a lot of doubters on the way
I think there's nothing better as a professional athlete to perform the best on the biggest stage and I felt I'd done that. Game Six was the defining moment for me and maybe my career. From the trade deadline to that point there were a lot of highs and lows in there, but those are the two moments for me. From the that Chicago game and sending a message to whoever was doubting me, and Game Six on the biggest stage as a player and professional athlete, you want to perform on the biggest stage and I found a way to do that which was very gratifying. Had it been any other player on our team, they'd probably had the game of their life in Game Six when we won the Stanley Cup.
At the end of the day, though, it's about the team and team game for me. I was just one small part that had a big game at the right time for us to win the Stanley Cup. I can't really reiterate this enough but it's a special thing for hockey teams—not just our team—all hockey teams in general, the culture of hockey and hockey players.
I guess the best example was Quickie—he was the backbone of that team. He was everything. Without him, we wouldn't have made the playoffs. When he got that Conn Smythe—again it's the hockey culture—he barely lifted it for like half a second. But you could see all the players behind him. That was one of my prouder moments of being part of this team, seeing Quickie get that trophy because he deserved every bit of it. And I think everyone on this team understood how valuable he was to us. As a group of players who go on to lift the Cup, again there are no words to describe it.
THE BOOK -- MORE
The Collector’s Edition is $60 and includes the following: The book and DVD of Game 6 (versus New Jersey) with Miller and Fox’s call.
The Special Limited Edition is $450 and includes the following:
The book, DVD of Game 6, piece of authentic board glass from Game 6, leather binding and a presenting container. Only 450 of this edition have been printed.
LA Kings Full Season Ticket Members save $10 off the book.
To obtain a copy, shop TEAM LA Store at STAPLES Center or call 877-257-4916. Available only while supplies last.
More info: http://kings.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=82869&navid=DL|LAK|home