Scott Sabourin Took An Unusual Path To Become An NHL Prospect With LA Kings

Los Angeles Kings right wing prospect Scott Sabourin, shown
here during the Kings’ 2013 Training Camp.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — While Los Angeles Kings loyalists are collectively holding their breathe, anxiously awaiting word on the condition of superstar goaltender Jonathan Quick, who suffered an apparent lower body injury at Buffalo on Tuesday night (a 3-2 shootout loss), the rest of the hockey world has not stopped.

In fact, it has not stopped for the Kings, either, even though Quick’s condition has to be foremost on their minds. Indeed, time marches on, as does their work, which includes developing their young prospects.

Their newest prospect, right wing Scott Sabourin, was an unknown in the Kings’ Rookie Camp, Rookie Tournament, Training Camp and pre-season games. But he quickly surprised everyone right from the start, displaying skating ability and puck skills that no one expected.

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Tyler Toffoli Is Expected To Get A Long, Hard Look At Left Wing For LA Kings

LA Kings forward prospect Tyler Toffoli, shown here during the team’s 2013 Rookie Camp, at the Toyota
Sports Center in El Segundo, California.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — A mild surprise during the 2012-13 season for the Los Angeles Kings was that rookie right wing Tyler Toffoli, who had not even spent a full season at the American Hockey League level, got more than the typical handful of games at the National Hockey League level, and on top of that, he did not look out of place, not one bit.

But a few months later, Toffoli knows that he is not necessarily guaranteed a spot on the Kings’ 2013-14 roster, so he dedicated himself to a rigorous off-season training regimen, something he talked about back in July.

“I don’t want to just be in good shape,” said the 21-year-old native of Scarborough, Ontario. “I want to be in the best shape I can, so I have to keep working hard.”

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2013 Late-Round LA Kings Draft Pick Defenseman Zach Leslie Did His Best To Get Noticed

Defenseman prospect Zach Leslie, was selected by the Los Angeles Kings in the sixth round (178th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.met

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Traditionally, players who are selected by National Hockey League teams in the later rounds of the annual draft are overlooked until they move up a team’s depth chart significantly, and defenseman Zachary (Zach) Leslie, who was selected by the Los Angeles Kings in the sixth round (178th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft, is no exception.

Indeed, there was no media coverage when he was announced as the Kings’ sixth round pick. No television, radio, web or print interviews. But fast forward a few weeks, and like so many of the other Kings prospects, the 6-1, 172-pound native of Ottawa, Ontario jumped at the chance to get noticed at the team’s annual Development Camp in July.

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Playing In Traffic (No, Not Like That) Is The Plan For LA Kings LW Prospect Maxim Kitsyn

LA Kings left wing prospect Maxim Kitsyn, shown
here at the 2010 NHL Entry Draft, June 26, 2010,
at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Since he was selected by the Los Angeles Kings in the sixth round (158th overall) of the 2010 National Hockey League Entry Draft, left wing Maxim Kitsyn played one season with the Mississisauga St. Michael’s Majors of the Ontario Hockey League, but has spent the vast majority of that time in Russia’s Kontinental Hockey League, with the Novokuznetsk Metallurg and the Nizhny Novgorod Torpedo.

In Russia, the 6-2, 194-pound left wing (right hand shot) did not seem to be much of a factor in the attacking zone—his best season in Russia was in 2008-09, when he scored five goals and added two assists for seven points in 31 games for Novokuznetsk Metallurg.

Kitsyn got his chance in Canadian major junior hockey during the 2010-11 season, scoring nine goals and tallying 17 assists for 26 points in 32 regular season games with Mississauga (now the Mississauga Steelheads). He stepped up in a big way during the playoffs, scoring ten goals and contributing nine assists for 19 points in twenty games.

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2013 NHL Draft: LA Kings Net Seven Prospects, Maybe Even A Couple Of Gems

LOS ANGELES — Despite not having a selection in the first round of the 2013 National Hockey League Draft, held on June 30 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, the Los Angeles Kings appear to have made the most of their ten picks in this year’s draft, adding seven new prospects to their system.

The Kings watched the cream of the 2013 prospect crop skate past them in the first round as a result of the acquisition of forward Jeff Carter from the Columbus Blue Jackets in exchange for defenseman Jack Johnson and a conditional first round pick in the 2012 or 2013 NHL Draft, on February 23, 2012. At the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, the Blue Jackets opted for the Kings’ 2013 first round pick, leaving the Kings on the sidelines until the second round.

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