Kings Trade Blake To Avs

Archived from 2000-01 season.

NHL teams

The Colorado Avalanche scored a major coup by acquiring Rob Blake, one of the NHL's hardest-hitting and highest-scoring defensemen from the Los Angeles Kings.

The Kings sent Blake and rookie center Steve Reinprecht to Colorado for right wing Adam Deadmarsh, defenseman Aaron Miller, first-round pick in 2001 Draft, a prospect to be determined at a later date and future considerations.

"Rob Blake is an elite and one-of-a kind defenseman who is in his prime right now," said Pierre Lacroix, the Avalanche's general manager. "Blake is recognized as a major force in this league and an all-around great defenseman that combines size, skill, toughness and agility."

"I'm convinced our fans will be excited to hear this news," Lacroix concluded. "It's another example of how the Avalanche organization is committed to do everything possible to go all the way."

Blake will be an unrestricted free agent after the season and the Kings were in danger of losing him for nothing. The Kings first offered Blake a five-year, $40 million deal, then upped that bid last week, but Blake turned them down.

"It was evident to us from very early on Rob was intent on free agency," Kings general manager Dave Taylor said. "Last week, we added to our proposals in an attempt to bridge the gap, but we were unsuccessful."

Blake, 31, was drafted by the Kings in the fourth round (70th overall) in the 1988 draft. He won the Norris Trophy in 1998.

"While we are disappointed to see Rob Blake leave the Los Angeles Kings, we are extremely pleased with the players, prospects and future draft choices which we were able to acquire in this transaction," said Taylor. "Once we came to the conclusion that Rob would not re-sign with the Kings, our focus shifted to making a deal for Rob that best ensured the Kings current and future success."

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