John Ondrasik did an interview with Lucky Luc Robitaille during the last Kings vs. Coyotes game. Our reader, Jopocop, sent it over to me and thought Surly & I should share it. If you have not seen it, enjoy. Jopo thought the powerplay comments were interesting. I joked they were an indictment of Jamie Kompon. It’s a long interview. Here were my highlights.
J: You keep mentioning the word lucky. I know Tiger Williams gave you your nickname. Does that name ever annoy you? In a sense “Lucky” implies it’s not all talent and work ethic.
L: (laughing) No, because I know personally I had to earn it. Same as what I do now. Even though people open up and are nice to me, I still have to earn the respect in the business world. I know for me, it’s not luck, so it doesn’t bother me.
J: The Kings struggle on the PP. You were a power play specialist. When you guys were struggling what was the strategy to turn it around?
L: When you’re struggling on a power play the thing you need to do is get it to the net. I remember when Dave Tippett was our power play coach here, he would say Luc, if you get it in the corner, take it to the net. No matter what take it to the net.
(Kings Hit Post)…
J: Like that?
L: Yes! If you do that, start shooting…every good power play, the good play is done off the rebound. It’s never done off the set up. The perfect play is very rare because every penalty kill is too good. It’s off a rebound. If you watch Detroit, whom everyone says is the best; they got a guy in front of the net every time. I remember when we were struggling I’d take it from the corner and just jam it to the net. Not knowing what would happen. Next thing you know you’d fall on the goalie and a guy pops it in the net.
J: Why do you think the Kings don’t do that?
L: We have to.
J: Is that why Bernie (Nicholls) was brought in?
L: Yes, Bernie understands the power play and is good at telling the young guys what to do with the puck. The key to the PP is Drew Doughty. If Drew gets it to the net, we are going to get rebounds. I think the biggest thing in scoring goals comes down to scoring chances. A good goal scorer will get 4-5 scoring chances a game. Then some games you’ll get one goal and some games you’ll get a few.
J: Do you remember all your fights?
L: Yeah…if a player was disrespectful toward me I’d never let it go. I’d throw a lot of elbows. If I didn’t give it back they’d take advantage of me. I remember Chelios. Cheli was whacking me after every whistle. In 2001, one night I had enough. We’re up by a couple goals and he hit me a couple times and I wacked him back. He then took 2 penalties on me. I called him stupid and he punched me. I didn’t have time to drop my gloves as the referees jumped in. I got really mad because they gave me a penalty for fighting. So I get out of the penalty box and went on the bench and grabbed our left winger, pulled him off the ice, jumped on the ice, found Chris and crossed checked him into the boards. I dropped my gloves and started punching. I got 19 minutes of penalties.
L: Even Chris was laughing…He liked it…
J: Did you ever have a concussion?
L: I never missed a game.
J: Did you ever get woozy?
L: I got hit a couple games where I was hobbling. If it was today I would have missed a few days for sure. In those days it was take a couple Advil.
J: What do you miss the most about playing in the NHL?
L: The Room: There’s no boundaries. There’s nothing you can’t say in the room. That can’t happen in the business world. No ones calling HR and saying, “you embarrassed me in front of the team.” You got to take it.
HERO OF THE GAME…
As a big supporter of our troops I love the hero of the game. I also love how the players tap their sticks. The other day an opposing player, who was in the box, stood and clapped for a service member. Made me love hockey players and hockey. How did the hero of the game come about?
L: Our coach wanted to salute someone from the service…
J: What coach?
L: Mark Crawford. He wanted to salute someone, take them to dinner, and call them the Hero of the game. Introduce them doing the anthem. So that’s how it came about…
If you’re on the PP Game 7 Stanley Cup Final, 2 minutes to go, who do you want on the ice with you? Anybody past, present?
L: Lemieux, Gretz, Nick Lidstrom, Ray Bourque
J: Who would you want in Goal for your team?
J: OHH!….When he winked at Tomas Sandstrom did you guys know on the bench?
L: No, we didn’t see it till a few days later.
J: Does that make your stomach hurt every time you see the wink?
L: (laughing) NO…
J: It makes mine hurt…
J: What goalie did you fear the most?
L: Patrick and (Dominik) Hasek…
J: Who’s the best fighter that rarely fought?
L: Cam Neely
J: Who’s the worst fighter that fought a lot?
L: Kelly Buchberger, because he was always wide open. He was dangerous if he hit you, but he was always wide open.
Categories: L.A. Kings News