Europe, Quick praise and prospect update - LA Kings Insider

The day away from the rink provides a chance to break out a couple items that were tucked in the computer bag…

One, Teemu Selanne had some interesting comments in The Orange County Register the other day — link here — about the Ducks’ season-opening trip to Europe and how it might have impacted the team, which will miss the playoffs. Selanne said, in part, “To be honest, the Finland trip, as fun as it was, it really wore on this team a lot. It almost feels like it was mentally tougher than physically. … Some teams, when they went to Europe, they won the Cup. So there’s no excuse.’’ Back in October, I did this blog item, looking at teams that started the season in Europe in the recent past, and how their seasons went. Of course, the Kings stated this season with games in Stockholm and Berlin.

Also, Boston goalie Tim Thomas, former Vezina Trophy winner, had some solid praise for Jonathan Quick in the Boston Herald: “I enjoy watching him play; he’s very fast and very agile,’’ Thomas said. “I like his style, I thought, in some previous years, that he played so much, he kind of dropped off a bit toward the end. But that’s part of being young and adjusting to the heavy workload in the NHL, especially playing in L.A. with the humidity and the type of ice they play on, and the travel.’’

Finally, here’s an update on three Kings prospects who have been playing at the junior/college level…

Tyler Toffoli, who accomplishments have been covered here throughout the season, is playing the first round of junior-level Ontario Hockey League playoffs with the Ottawa 67s. Ottawa holds a 2-1 series lead over Belleville in the best-of-five series, with Game 3 to be played tonight in Belleville. Toffoli has two goals and two assists in the first three games.

Derek Forbort had his NCAA season ended on Sunday, when North Dakota lost to Minnesota in the West Region final (one step away from the “Frozen Four’’). North Dakota had picked up a victory the day before over Western Michigan, which, incidentally, is coached by former Kings coach Andy Murray. Forbort did not have a point in either tournament game.

Finally, goalie Chris Gibson is in the QMJHL playoffs with Chicoutimi, which holds a 2-0 series lead over Acadia-Bathurst in the best-of-seven first-round series. Gibson finished the regular season with a 27-17-4 record, a 2.97 goals-against average and a .893 save percentage.

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Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.