Two games, two losses, but getting incrementally better with each performance. If nothing else about these games has screamed “rookie pre-pre-season extravaganza,” that might be it. (At least there haven’t been any fights from guys trying to prove themselves.) Robyn shared her observations of the past two rookie games. You’ve got one last chance to see the rookies in action today before they return to LA for the main team camp and preparations for the NHL pre-season.
HOW TO WATCH
Game Time: 2:30 PM (Pacific)
WHO TO WATCH
Daniel Brickley: Brickley’s already got one game of NHL action under his belt, which puts him ahead of some of his much younger colleagues. And while we only saw a very limited slice of action from him, Brickley acquitted himself well (and already has recorded his first professional point). He faces stiff competition on the Kings blueline this year, with established players like Paul LaDue, Oscar Fantenberg, and Kurtis MacDermid vying for spots on the team, but if there’s anyone who could be a dark horse to come out of nowhere and seize a spot on the team, it could be Brickley. He hasn’t played yet in the rookie games as he was with his family following the death of his grandmother, so this will be our first look at him since his brief spin with the Kings.
Austin Strand: The big defenseman has played in both games so far for the Kings. Signed as a free agent during his overage year in the WHL, Strand put up some eye-popping numbers as a defenseman — 64 points in 69 games. While the likelihood of repeating that at the professional level is slim, Strand has a big shot and he knows how to use it. With competition at an all-time high for a spot on Ontario’s blue line, Strand’s going to want to continue to show why he should be making his pro debut in the AHL instead of heading east to Manchester.
Mark Rassell: The free agent camp invitee finished his career in the WHL as the captain of the Medicine Hat Tigers, recording 80 points in 70 regular season games, and 13 points in six playoff games. He was a big factor in the Kings’ first game when he skated alongside Jaret Anderson-Dolan and has made an impression to onlookers. Based on today’s lines, he’s been separated from Anderson-Dolan, but will be with Akil Thomas, who has frequently been lauded for his skill at puck distribution. He’s set to join the University of New Brunswick if not offered a professional contract.