TOFFOLI IS A “NATURAL SCORER”
Given Tyler Toffoli’s position on the King’s third line, it may be easy to bypass his near point per game pace this season. According to NHL.com, he is sporting an impressive 8G, 6A, and +10 rating , in 17 games. I was so impressed with the rookie’s positive impact on the Kings that I reached out to his old coach, Chris Byrne, General Manager and Head Coach of the OHL’s Ottawa 67s, to see what he thought of his former player’s success with both the Ottawa 67s and the Kings. Not surprisingly, Toffoli’s old coach had great things to say about him.
Byrne explained that Toffoli is a “natural goal scorer and point producer who has a knack for finding the puck in open space.” Additionally, he explained that the rookie’s qualities extended beyond the ice, emphasizing his former star’s “good sense of humor and an even temper.” Though he acknowledged that while playing on the 67s, Tyler shared a common struggle amongst young players of gaining strength and speed on his first few strides, Byrne highlighted memories of the prospective star scoring fifty goals in consecutive seasons and playing with Calgary Flames’ Sean Monahan. Finally, Byrne explained that the key to Toffoli’s success in the NHL is to play well without the puck so that his coaches trust him in key ice time where his offensive skill can show.
Well coach, so far so good. This kid is clearly flourishing on the Kings’ third line alongside Mike Richards and Kyle Clifford. However, he has demonstrated his noticed qualities from the beginning of his NHL career. Below is Toffoli’s first career NHL goal from March of 2013. This dazzling goal happened on the man advantage and clearly confirms why he has a reputation for finding the puck in open space. Note the youngster’s ability to fire the puck while it was bouncing on its edge. See below:
DON’T SLEEP ON THIS GUY
As it stands, Tyler Toffoli has 10G, 9A, and a +13 rating in 27 total NHL games. While it may be a bit premature to label him a future elite superstar, his impressive stats during his limited time in the NHL make it hard to imagine he will not be a large part of the Kings’ future. Keep an eye on this young talent, as he may soon be a name everyone will know.
I am a lifelong hockey enthusiast, U.S. Navy veteran, and future attorney.