The LA Kings rookies finished their weekend in Arizona with a 3-2 loss to the Golden Knights.
All in all, it was a successful weekend for the LA Kings prospects playing in the Arizona Rookie Faceoff. Despite their 3-2 loss against the Vegas Golden Knights in game three of the Rookie Faceoff schedule, LA fared rather well desert.
All-Tournament Team for the LA Kings:
LW – Martin Chromiak
C – Alex Turcotte
RW – Aidan Dudas
LD – Jordan Spence
RD – Sean Durzi
G – Matt Villalta
Here are some of my takeaways from game three.
1. Martin Chromiak impresses.
The most surprising performance during the weekend tournament for the LA Kings was from left-wing Martin Chromiak. Playing in all three games for LA, Chromiak notched a total of four points in the three contests.
His utilization of speed and skill was noticeable throughout the weekend. He was constantly on pucks and pressuring defenders causing turnovers and creating ample opportunities for skilled players like Byfield and Kaliyev to generate scoring chances.
There’s a lot to like in the former fifth-round pick’s game. Being somewhat overlooked in the crowded Kings prospect pool, he’ll gain more attention now after this weekend. And he’ll be sure to gain a lot more when he heads back to Kingston in the OHL playing alongside 2022 top prospect Shane Wright.
2. The Fagemo-Kupari chemistry.
After sitting out for game two against the Coyotes, Samuel Fagemo and Rasmus Kupari returned for game three and were a force.
Samuel Fagemo (LAK) looks like a guy who wants to go into LA’s camp and take a job. Plays with great pace, gets inside and was a scoring chance machine today. He did have last night off, so was fresher, but he was probably the most threatening player on the ice today. Also scored
— Chris Peters (@chrismpeters) September 20, 2021
I’ve always been fond of Samuel Fagemo’s goal-scoring ability. He has all the makings to be a 20+ goal scorer in the NHL. And when he is paired with the speedy playmaker that is Rasmus Kupari, that expectation seems quite realistic.
The chemistry between Fagemo and Kupari has been evident since last season playing for the Ontario Reign. They continued to display that connection in Development Camp, exuding the most confidence among the young LA players, and even further into this past weekend.
When those two get going in the offensive zone goals happen.
Wouldn’t mind seeing that duo on the NHL roster sooner rather than later.
3. Quinton Byfield’s weekend.
I get that this weekend’s games were primarily an exhibition for the team’s management to get a closer look at some of their prospect’s development. I get that. But I need to say, I was hoping to see a little more from Quinton Byfield.
Now I am not saying Byfield had a bad weekend whatsoever. Besides leaving early in the third game due to an “upper-body injury” as defined by LA Kings PR, Quinton played pretty well. He was involved offensively and defensively in all aspects, and strong in the faceoff circle. He played in all different situations on special teams, killing penalties, and was active on the power play. I was just expecting more.
If Quinton Byfield is to be an everyday player on the LA Kings roster, he hasn’t shown it yet. But as long as he’s healthy, he’ll get the chance to prove himself when the main camp starts on Thursday.
HOCKEY IS BACK!