Tonight is a very special night for us in Los Angeles, and for all Kings fans watching wherever else. 2012 and 2014 will always be big years in Kings fans' memories, and it is more than understandable. Yet guys from those championship runs are already disappearing. There is Brad Richardson, Simon Gagne, Jonathan Bernier, and Dustin Penner from 2012 gone. Jarret Stoll, Willie Mitchell, and Martin Jones after 2014. Rob Scuderi left and should have stayed gone, but oh well. Slava Voynov...yeah, never mind.
And then there is Justin Williams and Mike Richards.
Williams had been part of the Kings first bit of resurgence back to the playoffs in their early round exits. Richards was a big deal during the summer of 2011 when he get traded from the Flyers. Both were key in the 2012 playoffs. Williams was even bigger in 2014, whereas Richards, well...
The two moved on. Albeit on slightly different terms. Williams was set for a payday. Richards got stopped by Canadian police. But both landed in Washington, and tonight marks the first return for the two of them since they last wore Kings jerseys.
And wouldn't you know it, ol Justin Williams took out an ad in the newspaper to send a special message out to the city, team, and fans here in Los Angeles.
What a guy. Williams is one of those endearing personalities you can't help but like. And-
Oh. Mike Richards decided to take an ad out too. That's really sweet of him. I know things got sour later on with the team, but it is great to see he has risen above it and decided to say thanks instead.
Somehow, I don't think Richards is going to be getting that Legends Night.
Prediction: Richards scores a hat trick and levels Carter. He tries to fight the tears, but we all see them. It stays really awkward.