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
Iris Schneider | Images by Iris Schneider of the march Saturday in downtown Los Angeles.
Iris Schneider | The Pussyhat Project was born at The Little Knittery, where women have been knitting pink hats for Saturday.
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard runs weekly at LA Observed.
David Davis | Rapoport and David Davis discuss the first book that collects Lardner's daily journalism.
Molly Selvin | Sometimes the cable guy is really the cable guy. Sometimes the guy with dogs who lives in his RV is just homeless.
Bill Boyarsky
The new proposal by local government and charitable institutions for a $10 million legal defense fund for immigrants threatened with deportation by President-elect Donald Trump offers a helping hand to those who really need it.
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
Deserted, except for some gulls. My favorite part is the light from a sign on the pier, reflected in...