In this first edition of LA Kings News & Rumors, I will look at the Kings’ development camp roster and schedule, the 2021 Rookie Faceoff, and where the team’s top prospects fall in The Athletic’s rankings. I also address some recent news concerning LA’s schedule and jerseys for the upcoming season.
Kings Release 2021 Development Camp Roster and Schedule
The Kings recently announced their 2021 development camp roster and schedule. Many of the team’s top prospects will be there, giving the coaches and management a chance to see who might earn a spot in the lineup this season. Notable prospects expected to be in attendance include Quinton Byfield, Aidan Dudas, Samuel Fagemo, Rasmus Kupari, Tyler Madden, Francesco Pinelli, Alex Turcotte, Brandt Clarke, and Lukas Parik.
A handful of additional players were also invited to camp: Lorenzo Canonica, Quinn Emerson, Brett Hyland, Logan Morrison, Sahil Panwar, Jack Blake, Anthony Kehrer, Landon Kosior, Cade McNelly, Dylan Robinson, and Cameron Supryka. From Monday through Wednesday, the Kings will have a forward group practice, a defense group practice, and a full group practice. Then on Thursday, there will be forward group and defense group practices, and on Friday, there will be a scrimmage.
Kings Will Compete in 2021 Rookie Faceoff
The Kings are set to participate in the 2021 Rookie Faceoff hosted by the Arizona Coyotes. The games will be a great opportunity to see the future of the team in action. Clarke, Byfield, Turcotte, and Kupari are all expected to play, and the full roster will be announced before the start of the event.
The Kings will play three games: 9/17 vs. Colorado Avalanche (3:00 PM), 9/19 vs. Coyotes (6:30 PM), and 9/20 vs. Vegas Golden Knights (11:00 AM). Games one and three will be played at the Ice Den in Scottsdale, Arizona, while game two will be at Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
Byfield Ranked Top Prospect in the NHL by The Athletic, Four Kings in the Top 30
Scott Wheeler of The Athletic recently ranked his top-50 prospects across the NHL. To be considered, prospects had to be under 23, signed to an NHL contract or selected in the draft, and not a full-time NHL player.
Coming in at number one on the list was the Kings’ top prospect, Quinton Byfield. The second-overall pick from the 2020 NHL Draft played last season with LA’s American Hockey League (AHL) affiliate, the Ontario Reign, where he put up eight goals and 12 assists in 32 games. He also recorded one assist in six NHL games and two goals and five assists in seven games at the World Junior Championship (WJC). He is the perfect combination of size and skill and projects to be the Kings’ future first-line center, which warrants the top ranking on Wheeler’s list.
Byfield was not the only King ranked in the top 50. Their most recent first-round pick, Brandt Clarke, came in at number seven. The offensively-gifted defenseman tallied five goals and 10 assists in 26 games last season with HC Nove Zamky in the Slovak Extraliga, and he is expected to be the centerpiece of LA’s defense in the future.
The next King on the list, Arthur Kaliyev, was ranked 25th among the league’s best prospects. He projects to be the team’s future top goalscorer, and he showed why last season. In 40 games, he scored 14 goals and 17 helpers, which both led the Reign. He scored a goal in his first NHL game and put up three goals and five assists in seven games at the WJC, powering Team USA to a gold medal.
You can count on two hands the number of hockey players on the planet who can shoot the puck anywhere near the way he can. Not prospects. Players. NHL stars included…The Kings’ next chapter is going to need some game-breakers to insulate the glut of well-rounded top-nine players they have coming. That’s where Kaliyev should fit in. Find him the right linemates, use him on PP1 and don’t look back. He’s going to fill nets under the right coach/circumstances.– Wheeler on Kaliyev’s shooting skills and future with the Kings.
Alex Turcotte, ranked 30th, was the final Kings prospect to make the list. LA’s first-round selection from 2019, drafted fifth overall, played with Byfield and Kaliyev in Ontario last season, where he recorded six goals and 15 assists in 32 games. He also served as an alternate captain for Team USA at the WJC, scoring three goals and five assists. The two-way center will be a great option for the Kings on the second line down the road, and his leadership skills could grant him the next captaincy.
Kings’ Full 2021-22 Schedule With Start Times Released
The Kings recently released their 2021-22 schedule with start times. The team will open the season at home versus the Golden Knights on Oct. 14 at 7:30 PM. On Oct. 19, the Kings will head to Nashville to play their first game against a team that was not in the Honda West Division since March 2020.
The Kings will visit the NHL’s newest team, the Seattle Kraken, for the first time on Jan. 15 at 7:00 PM. Seattle will make their first trip to Los Angeles on March 26 for a set of back-to-back games, both starting at 7:30 PM. The Kings will close out the regular season on April 29 in Vancouver against the Canucks, but hopefully, LA will have more hockey to play starting in May.
Kings To Announce New Third Jersey for 2021-22 Season
John Hoven of Mayor’s Manor recently reported that the Kings will not be using the same Reverse Retro jerseys they wore last season. Instead, they will be introducing a new alternate jersey for the 2021-22 season. The new jersey will also be the team’s only alternate moving forward, which means doing away with the silver alternate and the heritage jerseys.
The Kings have a ton of options for their new third jersey. They could use LA’s original colors— that were used in the Reverse Retro—with any of the team’s logos used throughout their history. They could also reintroduce purple into the current black uniforms similar to what they wore from 1998 to 2013. If they want to get crazy, they can even bring back the “Burger King” jersey from the 1990s, although I think the team learned from their first attempt. It will be fun to see the Kings sport a new look this season, one that matches the new style of hockey they are hoping to play.
Zackary Weiner is a high school student from New York City who covers the Los Angeles Kings here at The Hockey Writers. He is a lifelong hockey fan and player, and his previous experience includes writing articles about the NHL for various online publications. His articles cover a wide variety of topics that concern the Kings and he takes into account a range of viewpoints, making his articles a perfect read for anyone who wants to stay up to date on the team. Zackary is more than happy to get into a conversation with fellow Kings fans, so feel free to leave a comment below any of his articles like this one to let him know your opinion and what you want to see next. You can also listen to him talk about the team on Fantasy Hockey Life and The Hockey Writers Live.