Wayne Gretzky isn’t the only former LA Kings captain getting a memory-lane media workout this NHL playoff season. So too is Bob Wall, the 69-year-old Ontario, Canada resident who served as the team’s original captain. Among the outlets he has spoken to are the LA Times and Sports Illustrated.
Wall will be a special guest at Staples Center next week for Game 4; current Kings players getting to meet their original captain promises to be yet another high point in this magical Kings spring. Wall tells yorkregion.com he has been greatly enjoying the team’s second romp to the Stanley Cup finals:
“Right off the bat, we knew it would be hard work to sell the product in Southern California,” said Wall, recalling opening the inaugural [1967-68] season in the Long Beach Coliseum while construction on the Fabulous Forum was completed. “It wasn’t easy, but I feel like I was one of the seeds or saplings planted, so I am kind of gratified to see what has happened.”
He plans to bring along his Kings replica jersey – Forum gold and Forum blue, of course – to wear as Kings fans will re-meet their first captain. “We were never allowed to keep our jerseys,” he said. “And you couldn’t refer to them as purple and gold, which, of course, they are. It was Forum blue and Forum gold.”
As noted during the Game 1 broadcast last night on NBC, this year’s final is the first time both participating team captains are American-born. Yet another sign of how far the game has come south of the 49th parallel.
Previously on FishbowlLA:
For LAT Hockey Writer, It’s Deja Vu All Over Again