After a big move from the east coast to the west coast, and a name change, not much else has changed. The newly-branded Ontario Reign are coming into this season as defending champions of the AHL, and they are playing like it early on. Part of the reason is that the Los Angeles Kings have a pretty loaded group of AHL prospects. While other systems may have a high amount of CHL or college prospects, most of the Kings’ picks from years past are now at the AHL level. Surprisingly though, only one of the players is a first round selection (Adrian Kempe).
In 2010, the Los Angeles Kings started trending in the right direction. It is not surprising that we started to see far fewer draft selections, as the team started giving up picks to acquire useful roster players for a deeper NHL lineup. 2010 marked an extreme departure for the franchise, as they had just five overall selections in the 2010 NHL Draft. That is half of what they had in 2009, and four fewer than in 2008. Be that as it may, the Kings were measured in their selection, and still covet all of these selections within their organization in one form or another. Some have made huge impacts at the NHL already and a few others are on the cusp of being impact players. Let’s take a look.
The Manchester Monarchs had a remarkable 2013-14 regular season but were left with a bitter taste in their mouths after having been defeated in the first round of the Calder Cup playoffs.
Without having too many high selections in recent drafts, the Los Angeles Kings have done quite well in growing their pipeline in areas of need. While the graduation of Martin Jones does hurt the goalie pipeline, they continue to stock up on useful centers and defenseman. While the wings might not be top-tier, there are some role players and quality players peppered throughout.