January 20, 2006


A New King Among Kings: Robitaille scores three goals, giving him a franchise-best mark of 552 and putting him ahead of Dionne, and L.A. beats Atlanta, 8-6. (Chris Foster, January 20, 2006, LA Times)

The game belonged to the Kings, who carved out a wild 8-6 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers on Thursday.

The moment belonged to Luc Robitaille.

He capped the game by throwing the puck nearly the length of the ice into an empty net for the fifth hat trick of his career. That added an exclamation point to his evening, during which he broke Marcel Dionne's team record of 550 career goals.

Robitaille fought to control his emotions after the game, in which his three goals left him with 552 as a King and helped the team rally from a two-goal deficit in the third period.

"It's overwhelming," he said. "It is a special night that I will have in the bank forever. I have had so many great memories here."

An announced sellout of 18,118 at Staples Center made sure of that, showering Robitaille with long and loud calls of "Luuuc" as he was mobbed by teammates after breaking the record.

Luc is a lousy skater and a so-so puck handler, but he has one of the best noses for putting the puck in the net that I've ever seen. He's also grown from a shy teenage rookie who couldn't speak English into one of the really good guys in pro sports. I was at the Staples Center the night Luc scored his 500th career goal; I'm sorry I wasn't there last night to throw a hat on the ice.

Posted by Glenn Dryfoos at January 20, 2006 12:49 PM

Nice title.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at January 20, 2006 6:12 PM

A class guy, but he couldn't hit the end of the rink when he was with Detroit.

Posted by: JimBobElrod at January 20, 2006 6:18 PM

JimBob is right...in fact, he was pretty ineffective in his stints with NY and Pittsburgh, too....but each time he's returned to LA, he's found the golden touch....

Posted by: Foos at January 20, 2006 7:00 PM

Mr. Dryfoos:

Boy, you weren't kidding when you said hockey would be more high-scoring this year, eh?

Posted by: Matt Murphy at January 20, 2006 11:07 PM