LA Kings' Top 25 Under 25: #16(t) - Brandon Kozun
Kozun continues to be a prolific scorer in the AHL, but it's gonna take more than that to crack the Kings' lineup.
Listen up, everybody. We've reached a very interesting point in the Top 25. The countdown so far has consisted almost entirely of prospects who haven't had an extended chance to show what they're capable of. We've had NCAA standouts, intriguing junior players, and even a couple prospects who aren't in North America yet. Now, we're starting to get to some names that you'll recognize not just from a scouting report or a draft profile. Today, we have a player who's been doing his thing for the Monarchs for a while now.
|16(t)|| Brandon Kozun ||3/18/1990||CAN||179 (6th round)||82|
Brandon Kozun is small (a generous 5'9" and 162 pounds). Let's just get that out of the way immediately, yeah?
Kozun also scores points, and does it pretty consistently.
Of course, AHL scoring doesn't transfer to the NHL quite as easily. Kozun is pegged to be perhaps a 30-point scorer in the NHL, purely using past scoring numbers and not taking things such as size, experience, ice time, or organization into account. So, having said that, let's take those into account, as we look at why Kozun hasn't gotten the chance to produce in LA.
Ice time? Well, Kozun is getting his in Manchester. However, he doesn't seem like a fit on an NHL checking line, so it's likely top-6 or bust, though Darryl Sutter might be able to get away with squeezing him on a bottom line and giving him "easy" ice time. Recall that Tyler Toffoli was the one AHL forward who got a call last season; even though he slotted in on lines 2-4, he was utilized primarily in the offensive zone. As Gann Matsuda mentioned in his in-depth Kozun feature, Kozun has finally picked up the defensive side of the game; that can only help his cause.