The KHL continues to produce good players at a good pace, but nowadays there are more players moving to North America than before, therefore leaving the KHL with a slightly inferior number of drafted prospects than before. Read more»
The Los Angeles Kings have always had a tie to collegiate hockey. The pipeline in the pro ranks includes former NCAA talents like Michael Mersch, Kevin Gravel, Derek Forbort, Nic Dowd, Joel Lowry, Nick Shore and Johnny Brodzinski. Now, the Kings are looking at a much thinner and less diverse group of NCAA prospects. Read more»
The Los Angeles Kings have an older group of prospects, most of whom have progressed into the AHL. For that reason, the Monarchs have been a force this season. The squad clinched the Atlantic division and the top seed in the Eastern Conference. They now move into the Eastern Conference Finals of the Calder Cup playoffs in an effort to erase last year’s disappointing first round bow-out.
As might be noticed in international competition, the center position is often an area that Russia has some trouble filling with younger prospects, as that country instead fills with veterans like Pavel Datsyuk or Evgeny Malkin because of the apparent lack of production from younger, less established players. But recently, there have been some signs of trend inversion as there have been some centers drafted by NHL teams out of the KHL. Read more»
Hockey is a tough sport with a lot to think about and a lot of moving parts on the ice. There is the physical aspect as well as the mental aspect that players have to develop. In the early stages of their career it is not uncommon to see one fall a step behind the other. The Kings have six prospects playings in the NCAA ranks and overseas, and most of them have endured seasons of struggles with a steep learning curve. Some, like Nikolai Prokhorkin, are battling mental challenges, while others like Adrian Kempe are battling the physical challenges. Either way it has made for a year filled with growing pains that will hopefully better these players as they move forward in their careers.