Coach Morris evaluates Kings prospects after Rookie Series vs ANA

Raw quotes from coach Mark Morris following the Kings 3-2 win over Anaheim in Game 2 of their Rookie Series…

On Nick Shore:

“Nick’s game has really grown on me. I’ve come to appreciate how intelligent he is and he’s very reliable. I think that I first realized it when I saw him killing the 5-on-3 when we were in Anaheim. I think sometimes when you’re able to give that type of ice time to those guys, their confidence really starts to blossom. I think that was exactly the case with him because the more ice time I gave him the better he got. To even get in the shootout and go out and bury it and put the game away- or the shootout away I should say- reassured me that he’s going to be a great player.”

On Zac Leslie:

“He’s a beautiful skater. He moves the puck well, he’s very mobile. I think that as he learns about defensive line and controls the skating so that the D is not out of position, he’s got a huge upside. He’s a good passer, he sees the ice, he can skate. All the other stuff is correctable.”

On any disappoint with all the penalties Andy Andreoff took:

“No, he plays that role for us right now. He’s got that element in this game where there’s really not a whole lot, other than Sabourin, there’s not a whole lot of those personalities that are going to do that type of work. That puts him in a spot where he has to step up for his teammates and he did that.”

On Jordan Weal’s overall performance in the two games:

“He’s very steady. He’s progressively gotten more and more reliable defensively. He’s very confident with the puck on his stick and defensively now his positioning is good and he’s learning how to distribute the puck well. I’m encouraged by what I’ve seen from him. He’s kind of had to play second fiddle to Vey in Manchester, and there’s a guy that wants to be on the ice and you can just tell that he’s waiting his turn to be the man. I think that with his work habits and his commitment to getting better everyday, he’s going to be  a great player in his own right.”

On the goaltending of goaltender Patrik Bartosak, including a big glove save early:

“Oh yeah. We had some breakdowns, there’s no question about it. Our positioning was poor and we got trapped giving up some odd man rushes. I really thought both the goalies competed, but him in particular.”

On Derek Forbort:

“I found him to be very coach-able last year when we had him int he playoffs. I think as he gains quickness and adjust to the speed of the game here, he’ll be fine. I don’t worry about him. He’s a big body with a long stick. He just has to ramp up the pace of his game.”

On if Forbort has enough of a mean streak yet for the AHL:

“Well when you’re thrust into that atmosphere, you sink or swim. He seemed to be able to hold his own when he played with us last year. I never saw him shy away from anything. He was hard to play against and he had a long stick. I thought he did really well for us and I think that’s continued. I’d like to see him pick up his foot speed a little bit and continue to play more with an edge, and I think that will happen.”

On Robbie Czarnik retuning to the game after being high sticked:

“Yeah he did. He had a pretty strong game, too. I know Robbie had a disappointing year last year, he’ll admit it. IT wasn’t his greatest year but I know he worked hard this summer and he wants to rebound and be able to provide the type of play that everybody thought he would be. He’s got great speed, he likes to lug the puck. I think that his defensive game showed tonight- when we put him out on there on a penalty kill, he hounded it and really put a lot of pride in that part of his game.”

On using Trevor Lewis as a comparable for Czarnik:

“You know, we did make that analogy. I said look, “you’ try to compare yourself with somebody, Trevor Lewis was not a pronounced goal scorer so to speak when he played with us in Manchester, but he became a very reliable player.” He won face-offs, his positioning was excellent, he was very coach-able. he was kind of the glue. A lot of nights, Trevor came up big for us and I’m sure that if Robbie continues on the path he’s on, he’ll get more and more successful and I think his confidence will start to take hold.”

If you missed it, a full replay of the game can be seen here.

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  1. […] quotes from coach Mark Morris can be read here (he offered opinions on a handful of Kings prospects)… and thoughts from Brandon Kozun and […]