twice the incentive
By Mark Kiszla
Denver Post Sports Columnist
Thursday, April 26, 2001
Of the 100 reasons why Los Angeles Kings right wing Adam Deadmarsh wants
to beat his former team in the NHL playoffs, he holds two sources of inspiration
closest to his heart.
Their names are Madison and Alexis. They are the babies who had to be
tough merely to reach birth. They are Deadmarsh's twin daughters, born
six weeks premature, only a dozen days before the Colorado Avalanche traded
him to L.A. on Feb. 21.
Sometimes, even hockey players cry. Deadmarsh did, realizing he would
have to say goodbye to his daughters with them in incubators at the intensive
care unit of a Denver hospital. Although they're now growing healthier
by the day, they remain oh-so-small, only 8 pounds each, not much more
than a handful in a strong athlete's arms.
But every time Deadmarsh picks up those little girls and presses his lips
against their sweet faces, they fill his soul as two of God's most amazing
"It has been a hard year. But my prayers have been answered," Deadmarsh
said Wednesday. "The babies are both healthy. Everything else is trivial."
When daddy's gone, as Deadmarsh has been for all but 14 nights of his
daughters' young lives, he carries the smiles of Alexis and Madison with
him in a photograph, from which the little girls beam at him while wearing
the team colors of the very Kings who took him away.
"We always figured Adam would be traded from Colorado one day," said Christa
Deadmarsh, his wife. "It was just that the timing was bad."
How could it possibly have been worse? The Avalanche broke up Deadmarsh's
family and sent him packing to a strange city, at the precise moment when
his presence was needed most. Hockey can be a brutal business, and no
matter how you cut it, the Avalanche's actions were as cold as ice.
Colorado general manager Pierre Lacroix, who often talks about the Avs
as family, sat Deadmarsh down in his office and severed a relationship
between the athlete and organization he had called home since Day One
of his NHL career. Lacroix "had to treat it like a business decision,
and he did," Deadmarsh said.
Before Deadmarsh could depart for the airport to begin a new life, however,
he first had to make the hardest trip of a young father's life, going
to the hospital where his wife anxiously was watching over the couple's
daughters. He had covered the same route less than two weeks earlier,
racing toward the maternity ward with a police escort, his suit clothes
hanging on a sweaty body he hadn't dared bother to shower after being
called away from a game, urging the cop to run every red light, hoping
and praying everybody he loved most in the world would be OK.
So how did Deadmarsh break the news he was leaving those babies and moving
1,000 miles away from Christa against his will? With a bucket of tears.
"I was sitting in a chair, holding Madison," Christa Deadmarsh recalled,
"when a nurse came in and said my mother was on the telephone. She was
the one who actually told me about the trade. She had heard it on television
back in Canada.
"I didn't want to believe her. I kind of freaked out. Then I started to
cry. When Adam finally got to the hospital, he said goodbye to the babies
and we went home to talk. I hyperventilated on the way home. That night
was hard. But the more we talked, the more we found the positive things
in the trade. ... Then, you kind of start going day by day, because you
don't really have any choice."
Deadmarsh made the journey back to Colorado with the Kings this week,
and slept in his own bed for just the fourth time since he was forced
to leave Alexis and Madison more than two months ago. The second round
of the Western Conference playoffs begin in the Pepsi Center, where tonight
he will lace up his skates as a visitor. It will be strange sight for
an arena full of people who still fondly call him "Deader." Christa will
be in the building, celebrating a mom's first big night out since she
willed those twins into the world after a difficult, bedridden pregnancy.
Deadmarsh is here to remind the Avalanche players why so many of them
frowned on the night the team acquired all-star defenseman Rob Blake from
the Kings. A teenage boy who grew up to be a 25-year-old man in Colorado
is here to put a big hit on his best friend, Peter Forsberg, vowing with
a chuckle, "I'd like to erase his face; I don't like looking at it anyway."
Deadmarsh is here to show Lacroix what a mistake it was to trade him.
With Lacroix present in L.A. earlier this week, Deadmarsh destroyed Detroit's
championship dreams with an overtime goal that clinched the league's biggest
upset of the first round. Can he now be an Avs killer?
"I hope so," Deadmarsh said. "I don't look at it like I'm standing in
their way. I look at it like they're standing in my way."
But of all the ways Deader is grateful and giddy to be back in Denver,
the best reason for this trip has absolutely nothing to do with the roar
of the crowd, or L.A.'s unlikely Stanley Cup quest, or anything pertaining
This is not a hockey story. It's a love story.
For Deadmarsh, know what the real thrill of returning to Colorado is?
Article courtesy denverpostonline.com
An Avalanche of newborns:
Seven have been born since August
By John Branch/The Gazette
DENVER - Adam Deadmarsh sat in front of his locker, sweat dripping from
the shaggy hair that hangs over his eyes. He was exhausted. It was a good
kind of exhausted.
"It's been the best couple of days of my life," the Avalanche winger said.
And several of his teammates could understand.
When Deadmarsh's wife, Christa, gave birth to twins Madison and Alexis
on Friday night, she became the fifth player's wife to deliver since August.
Of the 10 married players on the Colorado roster, half of them have children
six months old or younger. And with two sets of twins - the other to Joe
Sakic and his wife, Debbie, in October - there are seven Avs babies crawling
"There's something in the water," Deadmarsh said.
Pregnancy isn't supposed to be contagious, but it has spread through the
Avalanche locker room. Grace Heather Miller got things started in August.
Then came Chase and Kamryn Sakic, Chloe de Vries and Nolan Foote.
"I guess you start seeing other guys with babies around and you start
thinking about starting a family of your own," Deadmarsh said with shrug.
"It's kind of like catching a fever."
The Deadmarsh girls arrived nearly six weeks before their due date, each
weighing less than 5 pounds. But they are doing well, Deadmarsh said,
breathing on their own and scheduled to go home in about two weeks.
Deadmarsh joked about getting his daughters "into skates here pretty quick,"
and wondered how many of the kids would grow up together.
Forget years from now. What the heck was going on nine months ago? What
kind of water was everybody drinking last spring?
There are studies about how sex affects athletic performance. Coaches
in some sports - apparently not hockey - will ban sexual activity before
games and events, but that didn't stop Olympic organizers in Sydney from
supplying each athlete with an average of 51 condoms. If an athlete can
go through 51 condoms in 17 days - that's three a day - well, there should
be a medal for that.
Anyway, the Sakic twins were born in October. That puts conception back
in January, during a long Avalanche homestand. Foote's son was born in
December, so conception was likely in March. Yep, the Avs played just
four road games the whole month. On the ice, Foote was plus-10. Off the
ice, he became plus-1.
Like Sakic, Foote had just come back from a stint on the injury list.
Miller, however, was on the injured list with a bruised sternum when,
well, you know. He remembers the fateful day.
"I missed the road trip, otherwise I wouldn't have been home," Miller
Guess his sternum didn't hurt that bad.
Grace Heather Miller, born to Aaron Miller in August 2000
Chase and Kamryn Sakic, born to Joe Sakic in October 2000
Chloe de Vries, born to Greg de Vries on Jan. 1
Nolan Foote, born to Adam Foote in December 2000
Madison and Alexis Deadmarsh, born to Adam Deadmarsh on Friday
Article courtesy The Gazette.
article was a tie between being placed on the news board and here on this
page, but this page won out! Thanks to Rosalyn!
September 16, 2001
Kings' Deadmarsh finds a home
By Matt McHale
Staff Writer for the Los
Angeles Daily News
EL SEGUNDO -- For Adam Deadmarsh, the most comforting part about leaving
for this year's training camp was knowing home is only five minutes away.
After daily workouts at the Kings' facility, it is just a quick drive
to be with his wife, Krista, and twin infant daughters, Alexis and Madison.
Just five months ago, seeing his family meant anxiously flying back to
Denver for a few hours on an off day, then joining his new club on the
Finally, Deadmarsh has settled in nearby Manhattan Beach, playing with
a team he helped get within a game of the Western Conference finals.
Although he admits he cried the day last March when he was traded from
Colorado as part of the Rob Blake deal, Deadmarsh was a playoff hero for
the Kings and hopes to keep that going.
"The biggest thing I learned last year was really something I already
knew, that family was the most important thing," Deadmarsh said Saturday
before the Kings played an intrasquad game. "Without them, this really
doesn't mean much."
Not only was Deadmarsh traded from a team that eventually went on to win
the Stanley Cup, it came just after his daughters were born two months
premature. Every time he went out on the road with the Avs last season,
he was filled with great uncertainty, first about his wife's difficult
pregnancy, then for the health of his newborn children.
"My wife and I had a really tough time, some scary times," Deadmarsh said.
"Mostly before the babies were born. Now they're fine and things are really
The experience taught Deadmarsh, 26, not to sweat the small stuff. During
the summer, he underwent surgery to remove bone chips from his left wrist.
Deadmarsh wore a cast for three weeks and currently is not participating
in contact drills.
Just before camp, he flew to Colorado Springs to participate in an orientation
camp for the U.S. Olympic hockey team, which will be playing in February
in Salt Lake City. Most of the time, he just skated and made sure he didn't
aggravate the hand.
He will be ready Oct. 4 when the Kings open the season at home against
Deadmarsh will be needed. Kings coach Andy Murray is looking for someone
to fill the scoring void left when Luc Robitaille signed with Detroit.
"We have 37 goals to fill," said Murray, who has Deadmarsh on the first
line with Ziggy Palffy and Jozef Stumpel. "Adam can help with that. So
can a few other players."
Deadmarsh, who had missed 35 games last year with a variety of injuries,
scored a career-high 33 goals during the 1996-97 season. He has averaged
22 during his seven-year career.
After the trade, he had four goals in the final three weeks of the regular
season. But it was during the Kings' first-round victory over Detroit
that he cemented his season.
He scored the game-winner in Game 5, then came back in Game 6 with his
first career playoff overtime goal at the 4:48 mark. The Kings, swept
by the Red Wings the year before, were headed to the second round for
the first time since 1993.
"Playing his whole career in Colorado, Adam brought playoff experience
to the team and a lot of credibility," said Kings goaltender Felix Potvin,
another postseason standout. "You could just see how much the guys responded
to his style of play. They watched and their confidence grew."
Deadmarsh impressed Murray, not just with his scoring touch, but with
the way he took the opponent's top players into the corners. His grit
was legendary in Colorado and something the Kings desperately needed to
get to the next level.
But during the Detroit series, Deadmarsh found himself staying up late,
tuning in to the first-round matchup between the Colorado and Vancouver.
He had been with the Avs since they were the Quebec Nordiques. Peter Forsberg
is his best friend. League MVP Joe Sakic was more than just a linemate
on the power play.
They all had gone out to dinner when the Kings and Avs met in the final
weeks of the regular season in L.A., but the playoff meeting was all business.
Potvin posted back-to-back 1-0 shutouts during the series, but Colorado
won in seven games.
The Kings had gone on a magical playoff run, but Deadmarsh already had
a Stanley Cup ring from 1996. He knew they hadn't gone far enough and
certainly didn't get comfort from taking the Avs to the edge of elimination
before that team went on to win the Cup again.
"It was hard, I'll be honest," Deadmarsh said. "I didn't enjoy watching
after we were knocked out. I didn't watch too much. I have a little bit
of a jealous bone, that's for sure. As close as we were, it was difficult
knowing we didn't get there. But we regrouped and the one great thing
about hockey is there is always next year."
a Father Figure for the Kings
© The Sporting News May 7, 2001
We could wait to
see who wins the Stanley Cup to declare which team was the big winner
at the NHL's trading deadline. But two little girls named Madison and
Alexis Deadmarsh already have helped convinced me which team deserves
Regardless of how
far they go in the playoffs, the Kings clearly made the best deal in acquiring
right winger Adam Deadmarsh and defenseman Aaron Miller from Colorado
for All-Star defenseman Rob Blake and center Steven Reinprecht.
The Kings already
have became kings of the playoff upset. They rallied to beat the Red Wings
in the first round and then stole Game 1 from the Avalanche in Round 2.
That explains the decision to eliminate all the other candidates.
Candidates such as
the Avalanche and Blake; the Blues and left winger Keith Tkachuk; the
Devils and defenseman Sean O'Donnell; the Maple Leafs and defenseman Aki
Berg; the Sabres and forwards Donald Audette and Steve Heinze; the Penguins
and goaltender Johan Hedberg; the Stars and defenseman Grant Ledyard.
These deals won't compare to the Kings' acquisition no matter how far
the other teams go in the playoffs.
daughters, Madison and Alexis, still don't understand what happened the
night of February 21 when the Kings were six points out of a playoff position
and looking for excuses because of Blake's impending free agency and imminent
trade. Regular feedings and dry diapers are more important to the youngest
members of the Deadmarsh clan than power plays and penalty killing right
Madison and Alexis
were born six weeks prematurely-only six days before the Avalanche traded
their father to Los Angeles. The twins had no vote in their future when
their dad said a tearful goodbye to his infant daughters in incubators
at the intensive care unit of a Denver hospital. The girls are now 8 pounds
each, and they know how special their daddy is to them-and to the Kings.
It's not popular
to trade a star like Blake, but in this case the Kings made the right
choice because the team was out of the playoffs when the deal was made.
Before the deal, the players say, they looked to Blake to get them through
every difficult situation. Now that he's gone, the Kings have become self-reliant-and
adding Deadmarsh and Miller as leaders has helped show the players they
can fend for themselves.
attitude, plus reliable goaltending from Felix Potvin, helped the Kings
make a great run-13-4-5-2 record after the trade-for the seventh seed
in the Western Conferenceand they have put on a good run so far in the
"It's been a hard
year. But my prayers have been answered," Deadmarsh says. "The babies
are both healthy. Everything else is trivial."
Well, almost. Deadmarsh
had three goals and two assists in the six games against Detroit, including
two game-winning goals. He set up Nelson Emerson to tie Game I against
the Avalanche at 2-2.
He carries the smiles
of his daughters with him in a photograph in which the girls are wearing
the Kings team colors.
"It's tough to take
a dad away from his kids any time, never mind under desperate circumstances
like this," Kings coach Andy Murray says. "But he hasn't wavered in his
dedication to his new team.
"His attitude for
the team has been contagious. It's always that extra effort, that extra
battle. And I think everyone has learned it takes that extra effort to
win in the playoffs."
"The guy goes all-out
every second he's out there," left winger Luc Robitaille says. "He and
Miller play hurt, they play hard, they play tough. They come from a team
expecting to win it all-and they didn't lose that attitude coming to a
team that wasn't even guaranteed a playoff spot."
was sitting in a chair at the hospital holding Madison when she got a
call from her mother, who had just heard about the trade.
So much for the fun of sports.
Officials of hockey
teams like to talk about how their team is a family experiencing highs
and lows together-players, wives and kids. But sometimes these families
aren't so kind to each other, such as when a guy who has been with the
same team for seven years is traded as Deadmarsh was.
And it's all done
in the name of winning a trophy-the Stanley Cup.
"It seems like a
long, long road trip for me," Deadmarsh says, "but I've got this picture
of my wife and daughters smiling as I left them what seems like months
ago. I fall back on that snapshot I feed off of it-every day, every practice,
Deadmarsh knew he
was going to come back to Denver one way or another after the Detroit
series-either the season would be over, or he would be returning to play.
It turned out to be a business trip, but what a homecoming.
After a split in
the series, Deadmarsh headed 1,000 miles away from his loved ones again.
But he'll be back Friday for another visit with his twins-and another
shot at a Stanley Cup.
Senior writer Larry Wigge covers hockey for THE SPORTING NEWS.
home in LA
By Matt McHale
Los Angeles Daily News
September 16, 2001
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. - For Adam Deadmarsh, the most comforting part about
leaving for this year's training camp was knowing home is only five minutes
After daily workouts
at the Los Angeles Kings' facility, it is just a quick drive to be with
his wife, Krista, and twin infant daughters, Alexis and Madison.
Just five months
ago, seeing his family meant anxiously flying back to Denver for a few
hours on an off day, then joining his new club on the road.
has settled in nearby Manhattan Beach, playing with a team he helped get
within a game of the Western Conference finals.
Although he admits
he cried the day last March when he was traded from Colorado as part of
the Rob Blake deal, Deadmarsh was a playoff hero for the Kings and hopes
to keep that going.
"The biggest thing
I learned last year was really something I already knew, that family was
the most important thing," Deadmarsh said Saturday before the Kings played
an intrasquad game. "Without them, this really doesn't mean much."
Not only was Deadmarsh
traded from an Avalanche team that eventually went on to win the Stanley
Cup, it came just after his daughters were born two months premature.
Every time he went out on the road with the Avs last season, he was filled
with great uncertainty, first about his wife's difficult pregnancy, then
for the health of his newborn children.
"My wife and I had
a really tough time, some scary times," Deadmarsh said. "Mostly before
the babies were born. Now they're fine and things are really going well."
The experience taught
Deadmarsh, 26, not to sweat the small stuff. During the summer, he underwent
surgery to remove bone chips from his left wrist. Deadmarsh wore a cast
for three weeks and currently is not participating in contact drills.
Just before camp,
he flew to Colorado Springs to participate in an orientation camp for
the U.S. Olympic hockey team, which will be playing in February in Salt
Lake City. He will be ready Oct. 4 when the Kings open the season.
The "Baby Paradise Twins" were adopted by me at: