When the season began, a number of rookies had earned key roles on the Kings roster.
As things wind to a conclusion this weekend we’ve been looking at which newcomer was the best-of-the-best. And who better to ask than the four leading candidates?
In a series of articles that began here, Jonathan Bernier said he’d go with Trevor Lewis. Kyle Clifford couldn’t decide and went the safe route with a three-way tie. Lewis ultimately chose to select Clifford the winner. So, we don’t have a consensus yet.
Additionally, the group of rookies offered comments on each other, as well as fellow rookie, defenseman Alec Martinez. So, what about the young blueliner – what did he have to say about all of this? Take a look…
On Bernier – “He’s a really good goalie. He’s done a great job when he gets the call and he’s had a great year. I think that the team is really confident in him too. So, he’s a great asset to have.”
On Clifford – “Obviously, Cliffy’s a huge part of this team. He works really hard. He does a lot of things, he works in the corners, he grinds, he makes plays and as we saw the other night, he can score goals too. He’s a good force, toughness-wise, as well. If we need a kick in the rear during the game, he’s not afraid to step up and get a scrap or something, get the team going. So, he’s really important to our team.”
On Lewis – “Lewie’s just a great two-way player. He can play offense, he can score goals and he’s really responsibly defensively as well. I think he’s probably one of the best, complete two-way forwards and young guys that I’ve ever played with. I think he has a lot of upside and he’s going to get a lot better too.”
Knowing that he couldn’t vote for himself, who did he select when asked to pick just one?
“I don’t know. I don’t think think I could pick one, honestly,” Martinez started with, but then added – “I know I’m taking the easy way out. I don’t think you could pick one over the other, just because at different points of the year and different parts of the game, they’ve all come up really big for us. I think those three have really done a good job and I’m just happy to be in good company with them.”
Here’s a hint – they both pick a clear winner, no more ties.