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March 29, 2011 - 8:19pm

Report: L.A. Kings President/GM Dean Lombardi talks down Michigan, Berenson

BY TIM ROHAN

Gann Matsuda over at Frozen Royalty recently talked to L.A. Kings President/GM Dean Lombardi about the development of defenseman Jack Johnson. Brian of MGoBlog had the link this afternoon, but Matsuda's story was originally posted yesterday.

Matsuda was critical of Johnson's development at the defensive end of the ice and Lombardi didn't have much praise for Johnson's time at Michigan.

“This guy has never had any coaching [at the University of Michigan],” Lombardi said via Matsuda. “Jack just did what he wanted.”

“Michigan is the worst.” Lombardi added via Matsuda. “For hockey people, if you’ve got a choice between a kid—all things being equal—one’s going to Michigan and one’s going to Boston University, you all want your player [going to Boston University]. Michigan’s players—[head coach] Red [Berenson] doesn’t coach. It’s ‘do what you want.’ He gets the best players in the country.”

Johnson tallied 39 points his sophomore season, including 16 goals and 23 assists, before he left the Michigan program. His 32 points during his freshman season are still a record for Michigan freshman defenseman all-time. Johnson was the third overall selection of the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. And his rights were traded to the Kings a year later.

Here is the link to Matsuda's article:
http://frozenroyalty.net/2010/01/20/dean-lombardi-jack-johnson-is-learni...


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