Fine, fine, fine. There is no such thing as Frozen Fury in 2021.
And if 2020 taught the world anything, it’s that we can’t have nice things.
To borrow a line from the guys at Violent Gentlemen, we don’t care.
When you think Kings and Avalanche, a few things come to mind…
— The Rob Blake trade in 2001
— Adam Deadmarsh and what could have been in LA
— Warren Rychel (you might not, but I do)
— Tyler Toffoli scoring a hat trick outdoors in his final Kings game
— And if you haven’t named Frozen Fury by now, you’re just doing it wrong
Long before the Golden Knights were even a twinkle in Bill Foley’s eye, NHL hockey in Vegas meant one thing – an annual pre-season game between the Kings and Avalanche that was unlike any other contest on the league’s annual exhibition schedule.
Those games were the perfect embodiment of the phrase, ‘You had to be there to understand it.’
If you never had the privilege of walking the gauntlet at the MGM hotel or being inside a sold out Grand Garden Arena for a rather meaningless game in September, well… you really missed out on something special.
It certainly still holds a unique place in the hearts of many fans on both sides of the rivalry, a feeling likely shared by the 10 players in tonight’s Kings-Avs game who also skated in at least one Frozen Fury.
Launched in 1997, the spectacular lasted nearly 20 years and was usually just a single game played over the final weekend of preseason. On three separate occasions, including the final version, Frozen Fury was a two-game set. In total, 21 games were played over the life of the event. Los Angeles played in all 21, facing Colorado in 17 of those – including the first and final Frozen Fury games.
Through the years, the Kings also played one game each against San Jose, Arizona, Dallas, and the New York Rangers. There was also a game scheduled vs. the Anaheim Ducks, although it never took place due to the 2004 NHL Lockout.
Back to tonight’s game between the Kings and Avs, here’s a list of Frozen Fury alumni on each roster:
Management members from both teams also played a hand in the outcome of several Frozen Fury games, including the inaugural game back in 1996.
Avalanche GM Joe Sakic has a goal and assist that night.
Meanwhile, Kings GM Rob Blake had two assists in that first game, while team President Luc Robitaille had an assist, and Ontario Reign assistant coach Craig Johnson notched a goal. LA came out on top in that one, 4-3 in overtime. Who scored the goal? (the answer is at the bottom of this article)
All that remains from the final Frozen Fury at MGM… pic.twitter.com/rYYPkNBrwy
— John Hoven | The Mayor (@mayorNHL) October 4, 2015
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Frozen Fury I (1997), Kings win 4-3 on a GWG in OT scored by Don MacLean, assisted by Doug Zmolek and Jan Vopat