2017 NHL Draft: LA Kings Select G Matt Villalta At #72 Overall

Kings get the netminder they need to restock their pipeline.

The Los Angeles Kings have zero goaltender depth. Beyond Peter Budaj, who performed outstanding in an unusual situation last season, they literally have not had any prospect to develop since 2015. The 2017 NHL Entry Draft is naturally the perfect remedy to that and the Kings went a bit off the board taking Matthew Villalta 72nd overall.

The 6’2” Ontario, Canada native plays for the Soo Greyhounds and earned CHL Goaltender of the Week honors in March, going 2-0-0-0 and posting an impressive .985 save percentage. Villalta was not drafted in the OHL, but earned a roster spot from free agent camp after impressing coaches.

According to SaultStar.com,

Villalta had a 25-3-0 record, 2.41 goals against average and .918 save percentage on a Soo squad that finished with 100 points and entered the playoffs as the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference.

Villalta was ranked #16 among NA goalies, but his selection still shocked at least one person. Quite the rise for him to be the fourth netminder taken.