With the Kings Development Camp officially wrapped up, summer is now in full swing. Some prospects will likely still be in Los Angeles this month and even at different times next month, for voluntary workouts – and, judging from their annual twitter pics, many of them sure do love the beach. Friday’s morning sessions at the team’s training facility also included the annual scrimmage. Sort of.
Each “team” (the black and white squads) took about four shifts each against the other and then the nets were moved in a little for some 4-on-4 action.
Now before we go any further here… it’s a scrimmage – or even a glorified practice at that – so, please don’t try to draw any conclusions on which draft picks will be superstars, or conversely, who is a bust. It’s way too early to draw any such definitive assessments. Instead, use these comments as data points, then combine them with other info we post throughout the year.
Below are some crib notes from one of our correspondents who has been attending these Development Camps for about the last decade (i.e. before Dean Lombardi even took over as General Manager).
- Joel Lowry cleaned up a mess in front, scoring the first goal and putting Team Black up 1-0.
- New draftee Adrian Kempe looked really good. He didn’t score in the 5-on-5, full ice scrimmage, but showed good skating and seemed confident with the puck. He did eventually score in the 4-on-4 coming off a nice setup from Darren Raddysh (a camp invitee from Erie of the OHL)
- Zac Leslie showed nice poise for a young defenseman. He’s actively involved, has good feet, and keeps his head up.
- LA’s second round pick last month, Roland Mckeown of Kingston (OHL), really wanted to be involved when he was on the ice. Makes smart/safe plays for a defenseman coming out of junior hockey. When given the opportunity, made several sound defensive decisions, but seemed to lack a little of the offensive instincts some would expect.
- Goalie Patrik Bartosak was a one-man wrecking crew in net. The former CHL Goaltender of the Year made plenty of spectacular saves and showed why the Kings are so high on him. He’s scheduled to be the backup to J.F. Berube in Manchester this coming season.
- Camp invitee Kenney Morrison, a defenseman from Western Michigan (NCHC), was very impressive. He looked good every time he was one the ice and added to his reputation by scoring two goals on Bartosak – and nearly potting a third. The first goal went top shelf over Bartosak’s shoulder. Later, Morrison came back and roofed another one, backhand top shelf. He showed really good hands.
- Patrick Newell, another camp invitee (Indiana / USHL, and St. Cloud State commit) held his own. “For being as small as he is, he was really on top of it,” was the comment shared with MayorsManor.
- Stephen Harper, another camp invitee (Belleville, OHL) was solid on defense.
- Justin Auger needs to do more, especially for a kid who has been to camp in Los Angeles before and for somebody his size.
- Spencer Watson, a forward out of Kingston (OHL), selected by the Kings in the 7th round last month, had several scoring chances, but Bartosak kept preventing him from finding the back of the net.
- Valentin Zykov – whom the Kings have big plans for – continued to show why he’s one of the team’s top three prospects. He has a strong stick and body, especially when he’s playing with the puck.
Why wasn’t Russian forward Nicolai Prokhorkin, one of the team’s top prospects, at Dev Camp this year? Click here to read the latest on his complicated contract situation.
We’ll have a full update to our Kings Top 10 Prospects list later this summer. Until then, check out the links below and get to know several of the youngsters a little bit better.
Kings Goaltending Factory Readies The Next Prospect – key notes and quotes
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