Esso Hockey since 1936Legends Of Hockey
Esso Hockey since 1936
Blake, Rob

Blake, Rob

Rob Blake was starring in his freshman year at Bowling Green State University in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) when he was drafted 70th overall by the Los Angeles Kings in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft. Blake played three seasons with Bowling Green, earning CCHA and NCAA West First All-Star Team honours in 1990 as well as the award for Best Offensive Defenceman in the CCHA.

He turned professional with the Kings late in the 1989-90 season, joining an L.A. team that featured Wayne Gretzky. An offensive defenceman who was equally adept in his own end, Blake cherished the opportunity to join the rush when Gretzky had the puck, and in his first year, 1990-91, he had 12 goals and 46 points from the blueline and was named to the NHL's All-Rookie Team.

In his third season (1992-93), Blake played a key role in helping lead Los Angeles to the Stanley Cup Final, although they were defeated by the Montreal Canadiens. The following season, he enjoyed a career-best 48 assists and 68 points. In 1995-96, Blake suffered an injury that restricted him to but six games. That same season, team captain Wayne Gretzky was traded to the St. Louis Blues, and Rob Blake was named captain; the Kings' eleventh in franchise history. Blake served as captain from 1996-97 to 2000-01. In 1997-98, he was awarded the Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenceman. After eleven seasons in L.A., the Kings traded Blake to the Colorado Avalanche in February 2001.

In his first season in Colorado, 2000-01, Blake helped lead the Avalanche to the Stanley Cup championship; the first in team history. In 23 post-season games, Blake recorded an impressive 19 points while providing a stable and physical defensive presence.

His stay in Colorado lasted four seasons. During the summer of 2006, he re-joined the Los Angeles Kings as a free agent. He was once again named captain prior to the start of the 2007-08 season. His second tenure in Los Angeles would be short-lived, however. In summer of 2008, once again a free agent, Blake signed on to join the San Jose Sharks. Blake would spend his final two seasons with the Sharks and went on to wear the 'C' there, too.

Rob Blake also participated in significant international action. He was a member of Team Canada in three consecutive Winter Olympics (1998, 2002 and 2006), winning Olympic gold in 2002 and earning top defenceman honours in 1998. He represented Canada at the World Championship on five occasions, taking home the gold medal in 1994 and 1997, and silver in 1991. He also added a silver medal at the World Cup tournament of 1996.

By virtue of winning the Stanley Cup championship and gold medals at the World Championship and Olympic Winter Games, Rob Blake became the eleventh member of the prestigious Triple Gold Club.

On June 18, 2010, Rob Blake announced his retirement. Through 19 NHL seasons, Blake played 1,270 regular season contests, scoring 240 goals and 537 assists for 777 points, adding 1,679 penalty minutes. In 146 playoff games, he added 26 goals and 47 assists for 73 points. He also served 166 minutes in penalties. He was a First Team All-Star in 1997-98 and was named to the Second Team in 1999-2000, 2000-01 and 2010-02.

Rob Blake was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014. On January 18, 2015, his number 4 was retired by the Los Angeles Kings.

Following his retirement, Blake served as Hockey Operations Manager for the NHL. Then, prior to the 2013-14 season, he was then hired by the Los Angeles Kings as assistant general manager and on April 10, 2017, Blake was named the vice president and general manger of the club.

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