Welcome to the Los Angeles Kings Prospect Update, a weekly feature highlighting a prospect in the Los Angeles Kings system.
The Kings currently own the league rights of 45 players outside of the NHL, including Professional players in Europe, Junior players and players in college. Click here to see the 2008-09 LA Kings Prospect Roster.
This week we are showcasing select Kings prospect playoff performances, as the Junior Leagues entered into their postseason in last week while college players have been in the postseason for two weeks now.
Goaltending prospect Martin Jones, profiled here in January, started off his second postseason appearance with the WHL Calgary Hitmen in stellar fashion, winning all three games played. Jones recorded one shutout win and allowed only one goal in each of the other two games and heads into the fourth game of a best-of-seven series against the Edmonton Oil Kings with only one win needed for the Hitmen to advance to the WHL Eastern Conference Quarter Finals.
"We definitely feel that playoff experience is important for the development of a player," said Nelson Emerson, Los Angeles Kings Director of Player Development. "The level of play in the playoffs gets amped up from the regular season, which is why we feel that it is essential for a player to experience those games. Everyone is playing at a quicker pace, which will help them become a better player."
The Los Angeles Kings ECHL Affiliate Ontario Reign clinched a playoff spot on March 22 with their 3-1 win over the Las Vegas Wranglers. In the game, defenseman Colten Teubert, who recently joined Ontario from his Junior team in Regina, registered his first professional point when he assisted on the Reign’s third goal of the night. With that win Teubert and fellow Kings prospects Jeff Zatkoff, Linden Rowat and Bud Holloway are eligible for a chance at playing in their first professional postseason games.
“We are a first-place team here and we just need to continue to win,” said Teubert. “We are a playoff team, so hopefully I can do what I can to help the team out and get us further.”
Andrei Loktionov, the first-year junior player from Russia previously highlighted here, tallied five assists in his first three postseason games with the OHL Windsor Spitfires. On March 20, Loktionov recorded a season-high three assists in a 7-5 Spitfire win over the Owen Sound Attack, to give Windsor a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.
"In the playoffs a player has got to prepare that much more for the game," said Emerson. "How he gets ready, how he focuses, all of these are elements that are going to help his development as a player."
Garret Roe, the first prospect to be profiled his season, scored two goals for the St. Cloud State Huskies in their two postseason games last week, but his contributions were not enough as the Huskies fell to Minnesota twice to end their season.
Other Los Angeles Kings prospects who had a remarkable week included Scott Parse of the Kings AHL Affiliate Manchester Monarchs who tallied three assists in three games and improved to a plus-9 rating. Monarchs goaltender Jonathan Bernier recorded his fourth shutout of the season on Tuesday, blanking the Lowell Devils on their own ice.
Click here for the statistics on all of the Los Angeles Kings 2008-09 Prospects. For more information on Kings prospects and for past updates, please check out the Prospect News section here.