NHL Kings Opening New Practice Facility, Available For Public Use
The NHL Kings' practice facility in El Segundo is "set to open this month" and will be shared by the Kings, their AHL affiliate the Ontario Reign, the Galaxy and the public, according to Curtis Zupke of the L.A. TIMES. Construction crews are "completing the final stages of a three-year project that began when the Kings inherited a 50,000-square-foot basketball training facility vacated by the Lakers." The venue is "intended to be a one-stop facility for sports medicine and sports performance, available for everyone." Kings COO Kelly Cheeseman said of practice facilities, "They're all a hot item. Not too many of them are making them public. We looked at it and we said, 'We can only be enhanced by making this a public facility, versus a lockdown private institution.'" He added that the "easy option would have been to build another hockey rink" at the Toyota Sports Performance Center, but there "was not enough space for a sheet of ice." Cheeseman and Kings President Luc Robitaille "toured facilities in other cities, as well as in Europe, to get an idea of how to map out their space." Beyond the sports medicine clinic are "open gym spaces dedicated to sports performance study, such as the biomechanics aspect to better understand athletes' predispositions to injuries." Part of the Lakers' former practice court "was kept intact, and is among the training spaces" (L.A. TIMES, 8/8).