The Los Angeles Kings made major front office changes on Monday night, announcing they will fire both general manager Dean Lombardi and head coach Darryl Sutter. The Kings also promoted Luc Robaitalle to president of hockey operations and former King and current assistant general manager Rob Blake to general manager. AEG, the parent company of the Kings, made the announcement monday night in a statement by president and CEO Dan Beckerman.
The comments via NHL.com :
“This was an extremely difficult decision and was made with an enormous amount of consideration for what we have accomplished in our past. But the present and future of our organization is the highest priority,” said Beckerman. “Words cannot express our gratitude and appreciation for what Dean and Darryl have accomplished for the Kings franchise. They built this team and helped lead us to two Stanley Cup Championships and will forever be remembered as all-time greats in Kings history. But with that level of accomplishment comes high expectations and we have not met those expectations for the last three seasons. With the core players we have in place, we should be contending each year for the Stanley Cup. Our failure to meet these goals has led us to this change.”
Lombardi was hired by the Kings in 2006 after a long sting with the San Jose Sharks. The Kings didn’t have much success early on in his tenure, not making the playoffs till the 2009-10 season. Lombardi is credited with bring in Sutter in 2011, a move that ultimently led to a Stanley Cup victory, as well as bringing in young talent such as Drew Doughty, Alec Martinez, and Trevor Lewis among others.
Sutter was hired mid way through the 2011 season, leading the Kings to a Stanley Cup victory, and three straight playoff appearances that led to a another Stanley Cup, their second in two seasons. The Kings have struggled since, missing the playoffs in two of the last three seasons leading to his firing.