Frozen Royalty: Pete Demers Recalls Record-Breaking, Injury-Filled Seasons, 2001-02 to 2005-06
That’s it, we’re convinced. Gann Matsuda actually lived with Pete Demers during the 2010-2011 season. How else could he get this much good stuff? I hear Matsuda can make killer scrambled eggs. Here’s what Kings’ Demers had to say about injured seasons. Check it!
LOS ANGELES — Right wing Ziggy Palffy displayed great skill and speed when he played for the Los Angeles Kings from 1999-2000 to 2003-04.
Right wing Adam Deadmarsh was hard-nosed, physical, and was a very talented, determined, intense player for the Kings from 2000-01 to 2003-04.
Underrated defenseman Mathieu Schneider showed great ability to quarterback the power play for the Kings from 2000-01 to 2002-03.
Fans might have vivid memories of these and other Kings players from the early 2000’s. Then again, they might not. After all, so many of those players spent more time in the training room than they did on the ice—memories of them could very well be rather hazy up to ten years later.
Although this will undoubtedly bring up bad memories for many, the Kings lost a staggering, unimaginable 1,742 man-games to injury during those seasons (the National Hockey League did not play during the 2004-05 season due to a labor dispute in which the owners locked out the players).
In 2001-02, the rash of injuries began, with the Kings losing 211 man-games to injury. 177 were caused by contact, such as a body check, to go along with 15 muscle pulls or strains, three illnesses, and 16 other assorted injuries.
But even though concussions seemed to be the injury du jour of the time, only two players suffered concussions that season, right wing Nelson Emerson (22 man-games lost) and defenseman Philippe Boucher (one man-game lost).
Leading the team in man-games lost that season was Schneider, who suffered a hernia in November 2001, requiring surgery that forced him to miss 23 games, and center Eric Belanger, who missed 29 games after surgery to repair a badly sprained wrist, an injury suffered on January 15, 2002, against Nashville.
If you think 211 man-games is a lot, as the saying goes, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.
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