United Nations of hockey

FukufujiKings games in the afternoon often attract a bunch of fans in shorts and t-shirts, but I only spotted one pair of bare legs down near the ice today at Staples Center. The Kings lost 4-3 in a shootout after leading the Dallas Stars for awhile in the third period. By taking some shots in the pre-game warmups and watching the loss from the end of the bench, Yutaka Fukufuji became the answer to a trivia question: who was the first Japanese player to suit up in the National Hockey League? Fukufuji began the season in Reading, PA and moved up to Manchester, NH, where he's the backup goalie and has yet to play a game. He's unlikely to play for L.A. either — he's here as an emergency call-up for injured goalie Dan Cloutier. Fukufuji's arrival brings the number of nations represented in the Los Angeles locker room to nine: Canada, U.S., Japan, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine and Latvia (home of enforcer Raitis Ivanans.)

Sunday update: The Kings, who don't play again until Tuesday, stashed Fukufuji on the roster of the Long Beach Ice Dogs for now.

Photo: AP/Mark Avery via Yahoo

December 16, 2006 7:13 PM • Native Intelligence • Email the editor
 

© 2003-2014   •  About LA Observed  •  Contact the editor
LA Biz Observed
2:07 PM Sat | The funeral for Mark Lacter will be held Sunday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles 90045. Reception to follow.
Native Intelligence
Ellen Alperstein | For our money, the best version of March madness plays out not on the hardwood, but the desert floor.
Jon Christensen and Mark Gold | Jerry Brown's approval of more than $1 billion in bond funding for drought response has led to statewide discussions on the adequacy of the response. Here are a number of other ideas that could move California closer to sustainable water management.
Don Shirley | I don't understand why Blythe Danner's words were chosen to receive the spotlight in a full-page LA Times ad about Actors' Equity and minimum wage.
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard runs weekly at LA Observed.
Ellen Alperstein | How Coachella Valley's wind farms flip nature's switch. A side trip into eco-technology.
Bill Boyarsky
“The time to act is now,” said the LA 2020 Commission in its report last year urging big changes for Los Angeles city government. Not so fast, said City Council President Herb Wesson, who created the commission.
Jenny Burman
Before I lived in Echo Park, there was a tiny 1920s bungalow-cottage-standalone house on N. Occidental in Silver Lake. I...
Here in Malibu
They've appeared a full month earlier than last year, these mountain wildflowers, but in this 4th drought year, I guess...