Dodger Stadium ice for Kings-Ducks: ‘good as they can get it’

Dan Craig, senior director of facilities operations for the NHL, keeps an eye on proceedings as workers maintain the ice that will be used for Saturday's game between the Ducks and Kings at Dodger Stadium.
(Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

First off the Dodger Stadium ice Friday, Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr assessed, “It’s soft, but it’ll be fine.”

The Kings’ hourlong skate in advance of Saturday night’s first Stadium Series game against their Pacific Division-rival Ducks at Dodger Stadium went orderly in 64-degree temperatures.

The ice was most damp in front of the teams’ bench area, but didn’t obviously hinder the Kings
going through their routine.

“It has kind of a hollow feel to it, but it’s outdoors and we’re in Southern California. The ice is as good as they can get it,” Regehr said. “It’s the best -- and probably only -- outdoor sheet of ice in California.


“It’ll be the same for both teams. The only thing I wonder about is between periods when they flood it, there will be some extra time and the ice will probably need it because it will take time for the ice to cool down. I don’t think we’ll notice it once we get into the speed of the game.”

The Ducks’ practice started at 6:15 p.m. Friday.

Regehr said he’s interested in Southern California taking its turn in the NHL outdoor series that has made stops in Pittsburgh, Edmonton, Calgary and Michigan among other stops.

“Each game has its own personality, from teams with established hockey roots to us and the
newer fan base in Southern California,” Regehr said. “This is the first time I’ve ever been to Dodger Stadium. Very cool.”

How long will it take for the game to transition from an event to the routine?

“It takes a few shifts for guys to figure out how the ice is going to be,” Regehr said. “After that, it’s figuring out what you have to do to be effective out there. That’s the natural way it happens in almost every game I’ve watched.”


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