The Royal Half Preview: Kings vs. Sharks: Game 1

Tuesday, 05.14.2013 / 3:35 PM / Los Angeles Kings | News
By The Royal Half
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The Royal Half Preview: Kings vs. Sharks: Game 1
Disclaimer - The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Los Angeles Kings Hockey Club. All opinions expressed by The Royal Half are solely (and most likely) his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Los Angeles Kings or their Hockey Operations staff, parent company, partners, or sponsors. His current whereabouts are not known to the Kings and he has no access to information beyond the access and privileges that go along with being a half-season ticket holder

Game #1

LA KINGS
27-16-5
59 pts
5th in Western Conference
vs
SAN JOSE SHARKS
25-16-7
57 pts
6th in Western Conference
 
Season Series Tied 2-2
 
7:00pm, Staples Center
Los Angeles, CA
NBCSN, TSN
 
BEST CALIFORNIA TEAM TO WIN THE STANLEY CUP:
 

 
ONLY CALIFORNIA TEAM TO NEVER WIN THE STANLEY CUP:
 
 
 
BEST OPPOSITION BLOGS:
Fear the Fin
Battle of California
 
BEST OPPOSITION FAN TO FOLLOW ON TWITTER:
 
ARE THE LA KINGS IN THE NEXT ROUND?
 
 
The year was 1992. Bill Clinton was just beginning his campaign for President. The United States had just recognized the independence of some Eastern European country that no one had ever heard of or would ever hear from again. And some say it was the Golden Age of TV Sitcoms.
 
 
 
 
 
This is one Hollwyood remake that I would be all for.
 
It was April 18th, 1992... and the Los Angeles Kings were opening their 1st Round Smythe Division Playoff series against the Bernie Nicholls-led Edmonton Oilers. The series would go 6 games as the Oilers would eliminate the Kings for the 2nd straight season. The real news here isn't another 1st Round loss for the LA Kings... but rather this was the last time the Los Angeles Kings held home ice advantage in the NHL Playoffs. Well, the first time before the puck drops tonight at Staples Center.
 
 
Ugh. Not again.
 
So we here at The Royal Half decided we would take a look at 5 things that did not exist the last time the Los Angeles Kings held home ice advantage in a playoff series. It's something we like to to call...
 
 
 
5) THE BULK OF RAY WHITNEY'S NHL CAREER
 
Now, we've covered Ray Whitney extensively here before in the GAMEDAY PREVIEW... but the 40 year-old current Dallas Star made his NHL debut in the 2nd to last game of the 1991-92 season for the San Jose Sharks... which just happened to be their first season in the league as well.
 
 
Koln, San Diego and San Jose.
What is the craziest hockey season ever, Alex?
 
I think in 1992, all San Jose Sharks fans knew that Ray Whitney and draftmate Pat Falloon would still be playing hockey some 21 years later*.
 
 
*offer may not apply to Pat Falloon.
 
4) NICK NOLTE'S UGLINESS

The year was 1992... and America had no idea what it was thinking.
 
 
I think we all knew in 1992... that Nick Nolte OH YOU GET THE JOKE...
 
 
I don't want to be mean to Nick Nolte. I loved him in Slap Shot 2
 
 
 

3) LARRY ROBINSON'S NHL COACHING CAREER
 
After the Los Angeles Kings lost their playoff series in 1992, aka the last time they had home ice advantage... 40 year-old LA Kings defenseman, Larry Robinson, retired from the NHL. 
 
 
The original Dream Team.
 
1 year later, Larry Robinson was hired as an assistant coach for the New Jersey Devils. 2 years later in 1995, the Devils won the Stanley Cup. That fall, Larry Robinson was hired as the Head Coach of the Los Angeles Kings. And I think we all know how that turned out. 
 
 
Ugly.
 
Robinson returned to the New Jersey Devils as a Head Coach... and I think we all know how that turned out.
 
 
This could easily be one of my favorite unexplained hockey photos of all-time.
 
Now, 21 years after retiring as a LA King... Larry Robinson is an assistant coach for their 2nd Round opponent, the San Jose Sharks. And apparently he's a huge part of their defensive success this season... and has huge hands. Which Robinson has used before to live out every hockey fans dream...
 
 
Pummeling Mike Milbury's face.
 
 
2) TEXT MESSAGING
 
It was December 3rd, 1992... a mere 7 months and 6 days from when the Edmonton Oilers eliminated the Los Angeles Kings from the 1992 playoffs... when the first ever text message was sent
 
 
It probably looked something like this.
 
That's right, LA Kings fans. The last time your favorite hockey team had home ice advantage in the Stanley Cup Playoffs... text messaging hadn't been invented. The first ever text message was sent from a computer desktop to to a mobile phone... which meant that this was logically the next step...
 
 
Pretty sure this was the invention of sexting.
 
And this new technology would eventually lead to groundbreaking communications like this:
 
What a time to be alive.
 

 
1) JAY LENO AS HOST OF THE TONIGHT SHOW
 
On May 25th, 1992... 28 days after the last time the Los Angeles Kings had home ice advantage in the Stanley Cup Playoffs... Jay Leno made his debut as host of The Tonight Show.
 
 
Boy, comedy hasn't changed one bit has it?
 
Well, at least next year on The Tonight Show... they'll be making funny jokes about hockey. And just funny jokes in general really.
 

BONUS) TYLER TOFFOLI
 
Tyler Toffoli was born on April 24th, 1992. Otherwise known as Game 4 of the last time the Los Angeles Kings had home ice advantage in a Stanley Cup Playoff series.
 
 
Too bad we all know his real nickname now. 
 

 
THE ROYAL HALF GAMEDAY PREVIEW TWEET OF THE DAY

From LA Kings fan, @BillyBlazington... either local news station NBC 4 has screwed up again...
or Drew Doughty is launching a clothing line...
 
 
Never change, NBC 4. Never ever change
 
 
The Royal Half has been a Los Angeles Kings fan since 1988 and a Half-Season Ticket Holder since 2002. He has seen the following goaltenders play in person for the Los Angeles Kings… Kelly Hrudey, Grant Fuhr, Byron Dafoe, Jamie Storr, Stephane Fiset, Felix Potvin, Cristobal Huet, Roman Cechmanek, Mathieu Garon, Adam Hauser, Jason LaBarbera, Barry Brust, Sean Burke, Dan Cloutier, Yutaka Fukufuji, Jean-Sebastien Aubin, Erik Ersberg, Jonathan Bernier and Jonathan Quick. If you like the hockey equivalent of dirty jokes or enjoy humorous screen-grabs of NHL players and broadcasters with funny captions... man, you are going to like The Royal Half. You can follow The Royal Half on Twitter at @TheRoyalHalf