By STEVEN HERBERT
The Los Angeles Kings will unveil a banner emblematic of their first Stanley Cup and players will receive their championship rings Saturday at Staples Center, three months later than originally planned.
Unlike the Los Angeles Lakers’ championship banners, the Kings’ championship banner will be hung from the rafters, instead of the wall, giving them room for additional banners, team Governor Tim Leiweke said last week.
The championship ring, made by Tiffany & Co., includes 104 round brilliant pave set diamonds on its face. The Kings’ crest sits atop the Stanley Cup and the text, “Stanley Cup Champions” is set around the bezel, a team official said.
The ring’s shanks celebrate the Kings’ 2011-12 season. The team’s crown and player name in raised letters appear on one shank. The Kings’ team name, the NHL logo, 16-4 Stanley Cup playoff record and 2012 appear on the other shank.
Fans are encouraged to be in their seats by 11:30 a.m.
The on-ice ceremony will begin at noon and be televised in its entirety by NBC, as will the season-opening game against the Chicago Blackhawks that follows.
All fans at the game will receive a miniature replica of the banner.
A pregame Fan Fest will begin outside Staples Center at 9:30 a.m., with street hockey, puck shooting, face painting, a tattoo artist and prizes distributed by Bailey, the team mascot, and the Ice Crew.
The Stanley Cup will be located at center ice of the LA Kings Ice at LA Live rink from 9:30-10:15 a.m., then marched into Staples Center beginning at about 10:30 a.m.
Former Kings Marcel Dionne, a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, and Daryl Evans will sign autographs at the Toyota display on Chick Hearn Court from 10:15 a.m.-11:15 a.m.
The LA Kings Ice at LA Live rink will open for public skating at 11 a.m.
The ceremony had been scheduled for Oct. 12, but the NHL locked out its players Sept. 15 when it was unable to reach an agreement with the National Hockey League Players Association on a new collective bargaining agreement.
The two sides reached a tentative agreement on Jan. 6 and the lockout officially ended last Saturday and the league announced a shortened 48-game schedule, with play beginning Saturday.