The Los Angeles Kings have one of the top prospect pools in the NHL. Yes, they have had a lot of high draft picks, but not all of them are first-rounders, and that’s a healthy sign for them down the road. The key is getting them to develop, and they wait longer than most, but the NHL is getting younger every day, so there’s more temptation to have prospects play as soon as they can.
- Quinton Byfield – The Kings couldn’t pass on a natural center who has speed and can be physical. Dominant centers are hard to find, and he has a chance to be one. He will get a chance in the NHL right away.
- Alex Turcotte – This center is sturdy on his skates. He has slick moves. It’s hard to get the puck off his stick. He makes good offensive decisions off the wall. He will play games for the Kings this season.
- Tobias Bjornfot – This talented defenseman is a solid two-way defender with offensive upside. He played in the AHL last season, got his NHL cup of coffee, is currently playing in the SHL, and now will get a longer look.
- Arthur Kaliyev – Every team needs a sniper, and he fits the bill. He’s good without the puck and better on defense, so he’s getting closer as he continues to fill the net elsewhere.
- Gabe Vilardi – He’s a smart center who was 53.3% on face-offs in a small window for the Kings last season. He’s got great hands, and a strong wrist shot. He uses his 6-3 frame well.
- Rasmus Kupari – This center has a solid two-way game, speed, and playmaking. He scores some goals as well. He even sets screens in front of the net. He should play mostly with Ontario this year in the AHL depending on how scheduling goes.
- Helge Grans – His skating is improved, and his puck-moving, decision making, and his offensive game are picking up this year. He has great footwork that helps him get around in the offensive zone, and his neutral zone passing is terrific. He just needs to get stronger.
- Samuel Fagemo – This 5-11 winger needs more seasoning, but he can score goals. His goal totals have jumped every season for him, and this year he has five in his first 15 games with Sodertaije.
- Mikey Anderson – This blueliner’s main gift is his hockey I.Q. He will do whatever the coaching staff wants and can slot in different spots. He’s adaptable, he’s been part of winning teams, he’s all effort, and he has some offensive ability that shows up at good times.
- Brock Faber – This defenseman is everything you could want in a second-round pick because he has a first-round attitude. He’s another who can play a shutdown role or a complementary offensive role. He’s good on the power, has excellent speed, and just terrific defensive timing.
If you’re rooting for a team that isn’t going to make the playoffs, at least they have plenty of good prospects. Their list extends past these 10, and if all breaks right, the Kings could be a very competitive team down the road. This is where patience as a fan and an organization are paramount to turning around a franchise.