Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar is the recipient of the 2022 Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award. Per the league, the trophy is awarded “to the player who exemplifies great leadership qualities to his team, on and off the ice during the regular season.”
The team had the following to say with Kopitar’s victory:
As a spokesperson and contributor in several team fundraising events, Kopitar strives to represent the organization at every opportunity, including local institutions such as the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Make a Wish Foundation, Wags and Walks and Kings Care Foundation. Kopitar also hosts a hockey academy yearly in his native Slovenia, which serves aspiring youth players who may not have access to similar programs. Typically attracting nearly 200 players per year, the academy has drawn players from more than 15 countries.
The winner of the award is chosen by Messier himself, and he announced the selection live during ESPN’s broadcast of Game 1 of the 2022 Eastern Conference Final.
Given out since the 2006-07 season, Kopitar becomes the second King to win this award. Former Kings captain and fresh retiree Dustin Brown won the trophy back in 2014 after guiding the Kings to their second Stanley Cup in three seasons. The Slovenian veteran forward has worn a letter on his jersey for Los Angeles since 2008 and has been the captain since replacing Brown in 2016. With two Stanley Cups under his belt, Kopitar’s 1,210 games are second in Kings history. He’s also just one of four players to register at least 1,000 points as a King.
The 34-year-old remains under contract with the Kings until 2024.
He’s exactly the player the Rangers need. Too bad he’s not available or cap affordable.
Rangers had top 2 picks two drafts in a row and took bleh wingers. They have nothing to blame but themselves for not addressing the middle.
The Mistake of Giving Eugene Melnyk a Liver Transplant
And all LA needs is McDavid, too bad he’s not available.
Veteran leadership. As for the picks, they took the players they should’ve taken. LaF and Kakko will be just fine. They’ve been doing it in the playoffs.
He’s exactly the player *insert 25 teams here* need. Too bad he’s signed to another team
Also Josi would be good if available, Makar too, McDavid would be exactly the player needed.
Summary: stupid comment gets stupid reply
I mean, hell yeah, the Bruins would look mighty damn good if someone fired up the time machine to 1971 and brought Boston (say) Bobby Orr, Phil Esposito, Johnny Bucyk, Derek Sanderson, Ed Westfall, John McKenzie and Dallas Smith … making what they were making 50 years ago as well, so no cap issues! Whoohoo!
bruh, they have 10 points TOTAL. that’s not even PPG COMBINED. BUSTS.
You can’t really blame them for drafting Lafreniere, he was the consensus top pick in that draft. Still think he’ll turn into a good player.
Great point. Must be why they are playing regular minutes and the Rangers keep winning. It’s almost like you are on a mission to prove how little you know about hockey.
All having the likes of Kakko skating a regular shift proves is that he’s better than having a guy from Hartford in to do it. Kakko isn’t a complete bum, but three seasons in, he’s running out of time fast to demonstrate he’s capable of being anything more than a fourth-liner. Which, so far, he hasn’t.
And Lafreniere isn’t lighting the world on fire himself; he’s producing at a competent third-line level. Every team needs competent third-liners, but let’s likewise not pretend that the Rangers were hoping for a third-liner when they drafted him.
The main difference between the two is that Lafreniere obviously improved over his rookie season, and it’s worth seeing if he’ll improve further. With Kakko? The most I’d offer him is $1 million AAV on a two-year bridge contract, and if some else sent him an offer sheet, I’d send him off with a wave and a bottle of wine while I collected the compensatory picks.
Doghockey, practice saying the following phrase: “Correlation isn’t causation.”
Love it. Well deserved, Kopi!
Way to go Anze!!!! GKG
yeah, Kopi… another feather in that cap, bruh! #GoKings