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“Simpler” And “Smarter” Will Be Keywords For LA Kings Defenseman Prospect Colin Miller in 2014-15

LA KINGS PROSPECT WATCH: Throughout the summer, Frozen Royalty will be taking a look at several of the Los Angeles Kings’ young prospects. In this installment, the focus is on 2012 fifth round pick, defenseman Colin Miller. An audio interview with Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake is also included.


Los Angeles Kings defenseman prospect Colin Miller, shown here playing for their AHL affiliate,
the Manchester Monarchs.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Blake Gumprecht

LOS ANGELES — In today’s National Hockey League, and especially for teams that stress defense, like the Los Angeles Kings, young players coming out of major junior hockey in Canada, or the collegiate ranks, are often rather deficient on the defensive side of the puck. After all, at lower levels, players get away with a lot more, in terms of taking shortcuts or playing a risky style.

But once these young players advance to the professional ranks, they often receive a rude awakening.

Although that may not apply to Colin Miller, who was selected by the Kings in the fifth round (151st overall) of the 2012 NHL Draft, the 6-1, 201-pound offensive defenseman still has a lot to learn about playing on the defensive side of the puck.

“He came out of junior where [players] get away with a lot of stuff [on the ice],” said Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake, who also serves as general manager for the Kings’ primary minor league affiliate, the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League. “He can push the pace, he can jump [into the play]—he could do a lot of things that he might not get away with at the pro level.”

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LA Kings Center Prospect Nick Shore Doesn’t Stand Out, But That’s A Good Thing

LA KINGS PROSPECT WATCH: Throughout the summer, Frozen Royalty will be taking a look at several of the Los Angeles Kings’ young prospects. In this installment, the focus is on 2011 third round pick, center Nick Shore. An audio interview with Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake is also included.


Los Angeles Kings center prospect Nick Shore
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — He may not be the flashy sniper or the speedy forward with star power to spare who catches everyone’s eye. Nevertheless, he got himself noticed by the management of the Los Angeles Kings because he rarely made a mistake on the ice.

That player is 21-year-old center prospect Nick Shore, who scored 14 goals and tallied 24 assists for 38 points, with a +18 plus/minus rating and 36 penalty minutes in 68 regular season games with the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League last season, his first in the professional ranks.

“He’s the kind of guy who doesn’t stick out right away,” said Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake, who also serves as general manager of the Monarchs, the Kings’ primary minor league affiliate. “You don’t see anything flashy from him, whether it’s his speed, his shot, or anything like that. But you watch him [throughout] the process of rookie camp last year, you start to realize that the reason you don’t notice him is because he doesn’t make any mistakes.”

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LA Kings Center Prospect Jordan Weal Is “Doing Everything He Possibly Can To Become An NHL Player”

LA KINGS PROSPECT WATCH: Throughout the summer, Frozen Royalty will be taking a look at several of the Los Angeles Kings’ young prospects. In this installment, the focus is on 2010 third round pick, center Jordan Weal. Audio interviews with Weal and Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake are also included.


Los Angeles Kings center prospect Jordan Weal
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Center Jordan Weal had a good first season in professional hockey in 2012-13 with the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, scoring 15 goals and adding 18 assists for 33 points in 63 regular season games, with a +8 plus/minus rating and 38 penalty minutes.

If that was “good,” then what the 22-year-old native of North Vancouver, British Columbia, who was selected by the Kings in the third round (70th overall) of the 2010 National Hockey League Entry Draft, accomplished in 2013-14 must be labeled as “great.”

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RW Prospect Scott Sabourin Could Be Another Diamond In The Rough For LA Kings

LA KINGS PROSPECT WATCH: Throughout the summer, Frozen Royalty will be taking a look at several of the Los Angeles Kings’ young prospects. In this installment, the focus is on 2013 unrestricted free agent, right wing Scott Sabourin. Audio interviews with Sabourin and Kings assistant general manager Rob Blake are also included.


LA Kings right wing prospect Scott Sabourin getting the upper hand in a fight during Game 2 of the 2013 Rookie Tournament against the Anaheim Ducks on September 9, 2013, at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Nearly one year ago, a young player, fresh out of major junior hockey in Canada, turned a lot heads during the Los Angeles Kings’ 2013 rookie camp and training camp.

During the rookie tournament that preceded training camp, this player was a standout for his all-around ability, not to mention his willingness to stand up for his teammates.

He continued to impress in pre-season games, sending a noticeable buzz through the crowd at Staples Center in Los Angeles on September 15, 2013, when he used a burst of speed and a nice move to split two defenders near the Phoenix Coyotes (now the Arizona Coyotes)’ blue line and go in on a breakaway. Even though his wrist shot missed wide left, the impression he was making grew exponentially.

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