No doubt, many Kings fans have a close eye on the Western Hockey League playoff series between Saskatoon and Kootenay. Why? Because Kings top prospect Brayden Schenn plays for Saskatoon, and when the Blades’ season ends, Schenn would be eligible to join the Kings. With its loss to Kootenay tonight, Saskatoon is trailing 3-0 in the best-of-seven series, with Game 4 to be played tomorrow. Now, here’s the rub. From what I understand, if Schenn joins the Kings for the playoffs, he would still burn a year off his entry-level contract if he surpasses the nine-game mark. Schenn appeared in eight games with the Kings at the start of this season. If Schenn should become available in the next few days, the Kings would face a question: is it worth burning a year of Schenn’s contract, with no assurance that the Kings will go beyond the first round? It’s certainly an interesting question.
In other playoff news involving prospects, the Manchester Monarchs will open the AHL Calder Cup playoffs on Thursday with a first-round series against the Binghamton Senators. Manchester finished with the fourth-most points in the Eastern Conference. Kings prospect Tyler Toffoli has joined the Monarchs.
Also in the WHL, Kings prospect Linden Vey and the Medicine Hat Tigers — which would be a great band name, by the way — hold a 3-0 series lead in the best-of-seven conference semifinals against Red Deer. In the Ontario Hockey League, Maxim Kitsyn and the Mississauga St. Michael’s Majors lead 3-0 in a conference-semifinal series against Sudbury, while Robbie Czarnik and the Plymouth Whalers trail 3-0 in a conference-semifinal series against Owen Sound. In the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Nicolas Deslauriers and the Gatineau Olympiques trail 2-1 in a quarterfinal series against Drummondville, while Jean-Francois Berube and the Montreal Juniors trail 2-1 in a quarterfinal series against Lewiston.