Lake Erie Monsters coach Jared Bednar understands the challenge in front of his team as it prepares for the Calder Cup Western Conference Finals against the Ontario Reign.
The Reign are the defending champions, having won the title last season as the Manchester Monarchs, and return 15 players with championship rings. In addition, Ontario is big, physical and plays “Los Angeles Kings-style hockey” that wins in the playoffs. Read more»
The Los Angeles Kings are into the NHL postseason, facing the San Jose Sharks in what should be one of the best first-round series. The Kings’ AHL affiliate, the Ontario Reign, have clinched their division and are also into the postseason. The Kings also have had players with amazing junior seasons – Spencer Watson and Michael Amadio in particular – and can boast of one with an NCAA national title (Paul LaDue). Read more»
The Los Angeles Kings system remains robust in role players, grinders, and two-way defensemen. This has always seemed to be the case. However, the organization is starting to see a nice evolution from a few players within the system. When you have so few high end picks, you have to hope for the growth of the Mersch’s, the Dowd’s, and the Auger’s of the pipeline to come through for you in filling in the gaps. While some of these players are in the very nascent stages of their careers and development paths, they are starting to rise just like the development team had hoped.
With NHL prospects, we are almost always presented with two major questions: “Can they follow up a strong season?” and “How will they adapt at the next level?” The Los Angeles Kings prospect pool has many rather high profile players falling into one or both of these categories this coming season. Read more»
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.