Proteau’s Blog: The Dean of Mean

• Great story today by Chris Foster of the L.A. Times on Kings GM Dean Lombardi, assistant GM Ron Hextall, and prospect Konstantin Pushkarev.

The young Kazakhstan player had earned the wrath of Lombardi while playing with Manchester of the American League, so Hextall was dispatched to deal with the kid. Lombardi explains the rest:

“(Hextall) is down there and I call him and I’m losing my patience,” Lombardi said. “I’m in Western Canada, waiting in this huge line to cross the border and I’m yelling into the phone, ‘Get him out of here. I don’t want him around our players anymore.’

“I’m out of my car and I’m just screaming. The border guard is looking at me and wants to go through my trunk now. He was ready to frisk me, people are beeping their horns behind me and all I hear in my ear is Hex saying, ‘Calm down, I’ll take care of this.’ Â… I’m yelling at him, ‘He’s going to tell every other player to try to go somewhere else to get their way.’ Hex is just saying, ‘Trust me, Dean, I can get to this guy.’ ”

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When Ron Hextall is the voice of reason, you know you’re at the end of your rope. But kudos out the ying-yang to Lombardi for being so open and colorful with a reporter. Can you imagine Lou Lamoriello or John Ferguson being so frank?

• If it wasn’t official before, it certainly is after Wednesday’s show: American Idol is the most successful exploiter of delusional and borderline brainless people in TV history. People can talk all they want about The Office making a living out of uncomfortable humor, but Idol takes the cake in that department. It’s as black-hearted, cruel and sadistic as they come.

hi.. i think your blog is the best and the hockey news has never been better… but i have a question about the kings.. after reading this blog and article about Lombardi and the Konstantin Pushkarev story i wonder why does he not call up Jason LaBarbera? instead he claimed Sean Burke…whats next? is Ron Hextall comming back? he cant be worse than Dan Cloutier