Everyone knows about the end of season meetings. Players sit down with coaches and management and discuss their season, its ups and downs, what the team expects from them over the offseason and coming into the next training camp. They are basically exit interviews.
Little, however, is known about the meetings that take place between the end of the regular season and the playoffs. Shrouded in mystery, we hear at LA Kings News once again sliced our way through the red tape and dug up the info on these meetings you didn’t even know existed until now. These are not your typical meetings. There is no back and forth. There is a mandate to each player, one they must sign and adhere to lest the hockey gods come for their souls.
Without further adieu, I bring you the Los Angeles Kings Affidavits.
We, the hockey players who wear the crown of the Los Angeles Kings, do hereby solemnly swear to exude those qualities which befit an LA King during the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs. To play with pride, passion and power. To have chemistry with our linemates, no matter how often they may change. To climb each hill we are asked to climb, be they made of chalice silver or hamburger meat. To give our fans a reason to cheer and just when their voices have gone hoarse, to give them more reason to unleash their vocal chords and rain deserving praise upon us. We swear to leave it all out on the ice.
Each player was also each assigned their own, specific affidavit.
I, Anze Kopitar, do swear to be there for my team in spirit. To watch from on high and give the notes needed that those at ice level can not see.
I, Justin Williams, do swear to work my way into the lineup for the playoffs. To play through pain and to provide the offense which my team so sorely lacks.
I, Drew Doughty, do swear to shoot the puck. To keep the shots low and on net. To flip that switch which has been growing dusty, to give an Olympic performance in every playoff game.
I, Jack Johnson, do swear to be decisive. Not to hesitate but rather to be aggressive, both offensively as well as physically.
I, Dustin Brown, do swear to lead my team the best way I know how, by example. To play with heart and skate with power. To keep it simple when the puck is on my stick, choosing only to run through those that stand between myself and the opposition’s net.
I, Dustin Penner, do swear to work my ass off. To put to rest any suspicion or history of laziness. To force my large frame onto opposing defenders and to utilize my soft hands with said defenders draped upon my back.
I, Jarret Stoll, do swear to hit the net. To win face-offs by any means necessary and to wear my newly appointed “A” with the pride of the “C”. To pretend each moment that the puck is on my stick that I am in a shootout.
I, Ryan Smyth, do swear to backcheck. To skate as if each shift could be my last, to call forth every last ounce of energy these old bones have left. I also swear to only attempt one wraparound
per game per period.
I, Willie Mitchell, do swear to swing my stick like a long sword. To cut down passing lanes and chop through my opponents possession. To cover my young partner’s ass when called upon.
I, Rob Scuderi, do swear to play goaltender when needed. To protect every lead like it is my last, independent of the time remaining on the clock.
I, Michal Handzus, do swear to replace the defense lost by Anze Kopitar. To shut down all large centers and to suffocate opposition offensive breakouts and cycles at all costs. I swear that for each shot on goal my line allows, I will donate one lock of hair.
I, Kyle Clifford, do swear to harass relentlessly. To pick a target and to be a pest. To imbue dread on my opponent, by means of vicious hits, vicious trash talk and cold stares of death that would make the hairs of a corpse stand on end with fright. Whomever I choose to make my bitch, I vow to make afraid of waking in the morning.
I, Wayne Simmonds, do swear to remember I am a highly effective hockey player. To stop bumbling the puck and to never let a board battle go by uncontested.
I, Matt Greene, do swear to hurt people and not to run out of position while doing so.
I, Brad Richardson, do swear to generated energy every time I step on the ice. To imagine all opposing players in Avalanche jersey’s and to battle and score as if I am imposing comeuppance on a former team.
I, Trevor Lewis, do swear to find that offensive spark I kindled for three games prior. To carry the puck through the neutral zone and to find passing lanes upon entry. To be a force on the PK and to be known from this postseason on, as a clutch player.
I, Alec Martinez, do swear to continue wearing my Drew Doughty hat, whether Drew himself decides to start wearing it again or not. To skate with grace and find seems for shots through the first layer of defense.
I, Alexei Ponikarovsky, do swear to play as hard as it would be for someone with a stutter to pronounce my last name.
I, Oscar Moller, do swear to channel those gods of thunder and war in which my homeland believes. I shall snap every wrist shot off every dot my feet find. I will get up when I fall, as often and as hard as said falls may be.
I, Kevin Westgarth, do swear to wear my three piece suit well, even if my coach requests I wear a jersey.
I, Davis Drewiske, do swear to be ready if and when I am needed.
I, Peter Harrold, do swear to relieve Kevin Westgarth of his 4th line role.
I, Scott Parse, do swear to do whatever it is I do, because its been so long even I don’t remember what that is supposed to be.
I, Jonathan Quick, do swear to stand on my head. To embody the armor which my helmet depicts. To forget about last year’s playoffs and begin anew. To ignore who is the goalie of the future and to be our goalie of right now.
I, Jonathan Bernier, do swear to continue my hard work in practice. To be poised, at the ready, to step in should fate look down its crooked, boil-infested nose at my partner. To keep the energy positive and the mindset competitive. To be the goalie of the future, even if I am not the goalie of right now.
Terry Murray was asked by Dean Lombardi to sign an affidavit as well, but when presented his paper, simply said “I’m not signing that Dean, you fired the last guy for swearing.”