What a difference a day makes.
Well not even a day.
Less than 24 hours after the Kings rookies were soundly defeated, 6-1 by the Phoenix Coyotes youngsters, the Kings returned the favor with a 4-0 whitewashing of the ‘Yotes in the finale of the Kings two-game rookie Tourney.
"The players, each one of them individually, they got their feet wet yesterday and they felt more relaxed, they showed more confidence and more composure and just felt good within themselves," head coach Terry Murray said. "That translated to better team play. For a young group of guys, they moved the puck pretty well, there was much more support throughout the game and a lot of speed that developed as a result of that support.
"It was a good bounce back game for them."
Leading the way was the line of Kyle Clifford, Brayden Schenn and Brandon Kozun, which combined for three goals, three assists and 10 penalty minutes on two fighting majors from Clifford.
"I think tonight was just a night when you get those breaks," Schenn, the Kings first round pick, fifth overall in June’s NHL Entry Draft, said. "Everyone, not only for me, but everyone was getting breaks tonight and it was good to see. We worked harder tonight and we weren’t so scrambled. We played more of a system game and that was good to see."
Schenn scored two goals and added an assist while Kozun also tallied a goal and two assists to lead the Kings offensive attack.
"[Schenn’s] a pretty gifted player," Murray said. "He is a competitive guy and wants to be where the action is all the time and you’re going to see a young guy take himself away from the play sometimes to leave an impression, but he was in the right place at the right time and made a couple really nice plays passing the puck. He sees the ice very well.
"The line was good and he was good in particular"
In addition to the scoring touch of the Brayden and Brandon show, defenseman Viatcheslav Voynov also scored while forward Juraj Mikus and Andrei Loktionov picked up single helpers each.
The offense was more than enough for goaltender Jean-Francois Berube, the Kings fourth-round selection, 95th overall this past June, in the 29-save shutout.
Murray was impressed overall with the performance.
"Each player out there played hard and competed and played with determination and a lot of passion that is what we want to see right now."