LAPD will have a 'very visibile' presence at tomorrow's Kings game
Mounted LAPD officers in front of Staples Center in July of 2010
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES — As the Los Angeles Kings prepare to face off against the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday and possibly win the team's first Stanley Cup, police, city officials and AEG are bracing for the celebrations that will follow.
"We will have a very visible presence for tomorrow's game," said LAPD Capt. Horace Frank. "We had a very visible presence yesterday, we will have an even more visible presence tomorrow because it's a potential closeout game."
Frank said he's worked a lot of the Kings playoff games and there have been "no problems whatsoever" -- but he attributes this partly to the police's continued visibility. Frank described the Kings crowd Monday night as "electrifying" and said that the celebrations can be expected if the hockey team wins -- and with a separate protest also planned for Wednesday at the nearby Luxe Hotel, the police will be prepared.
"We want people to celebrate," said Frank. "In fact by us having a very visible presence it helps us facilitate celebration."
The police captain added that there will be a parade if the Kings win, but the date hasn't been decided (that will be largely determined by AEG) and the exact route is not being released yet.
"We're talking about the numbers right now,"said Frank. He added that they estimate at least a crowd of 50,000, but the turnout could be as large as 100,000.
"You're going to have people going to the parade who are not necessarily ticket-holders but just fans," he said. "Sports fans in general, people who just like the fact that some L.A. team has won."
Frank doesn't expect the event to rival the 2009 Lakers parade however, which traveled between the Coliseum and the Staples Center and required about 1100 police officers.
The hockey parade has a "totally different set of dynamics we're dealing with," Frank said.
The Kings play in Game 4 of the finals on Wednesday at 5 p.m. at the Staples Center. The only other time L.A. made it to the Stanley Cup finals was in 1993 when Wayne Gretzky, Marty McSorley and the Kings lost to the Montreal Canadiens.