Kings Trade up in 2nd Round. Grab Winger Valentin Zykov.

Richard Wolowicz

Dean Lombardi is known for being very active on draft day, so it was not the biggest surprise in the world to see him make a deal early in the draft.

The Kings have traded up in the 2nd round. They gave up a 2nd (56th), 3rd (88th), and 4th (96th) for Edmonton's 2nd (37th). The Kings's scouting staff apparently loved Valentin Zykov and urged Lombardi to pull the trigger. TSN's Ryan Rishaug had this to say about how the trade went down:



Zykov is an exciting prospect who was projected to go somewhere around the 23rd pick, but slipped into the 2nd round. Corey Pronman, who had him ranked as the 19th best prospect, had this to say:

"He is a skilled player, showing nice touch with the puck. He is able to make plays in tight spaces, flashing high-end skill at times. He can distribute the puck at a quality level, showing quick decision-making, with good offensive instincts. Zykov's intriguing element is his physicality. He is quite strong for a U-18 player, and he is proficient at shielding the puck and driving the net."

More reports: Here, here and here.

In addition to his high end skill, Zykov has an interesting/sad background. His father passed away at 6 and he ended up joining the Central Army youth hockey program at 8. He had to move into a dormitory to do so. But, things are looking bright for him now.

This is a very good pick and adds some much need organizational depth at forward. He also fits the Kings' mold of a physical wing with great possession skills.

Here's a profile and interview with Zykov:

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