If the decline of the Buffalo Sabres had to reach its darkest depths before progressing upwards, the 2013-14 season was certainly the franchise's lowest point. At various points throughout the season, the team was in a state of flux, either in the front office, behind the bench, or on the ice.
The fall Top 20 list for the Los Angeles Kings saw the rise of some question marks about players like Jordan Weal, Nikolai Prokhorkin, and Jonny Brodzinski. Could they excel in new surroundings? Could they follow up strong years with better ones? How will they progress from the previous season?
After the 2006, 2007, and 2008 drafts yielded core members of the Kings future Stanley Cup run, the 2009 draft also yielded several key players.
With the Manchester Monarchs losing four incredibly key players to NHL call-ups, you would expect that the team would struggle this year with a lack of scoring or depth. However, with several new players and old role players stepping up, the Monarchs have remained an incredibly competitive hockey team and sit atop the AHL's Eastern Conference.
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