22-year-old center Linden Vey led the Manchester Monarchs in scoring and tied for fifth in the American Hockey League with 67 points (22-45=67) in 2012-13 and has solidified himself as an intriguing offensive prospect with excellent hands, a quick release and strong offensive awareness. He was the skilled playmaker between Tanner Pearson and Tyler Toffoli on one of the AHL’s top lines last season.
He’s also continuing to develop the 200-foot aspects of his game, an effort that he detailed in a chat with LA Kings Insider at Rookie Camp on Friday.
On what he has to do to push himself over the top to earn a spot on the Kings:
I think the biggest thing is improving your overall game. I think you look at guys that play in the NHL, they’re so complete, especially for the position I play. Center – I mean, you’ve got to be good in every zone and so reliable and trustworthy for the coaches to be able to play in your own end and in tough situations. So for me, coming into pro hockey, I needed some work in some of the areas, especially my defensive zone. So it’s just the continued progress, getting better every day on that.
On how he has improved since junior hockey:
Yeah, I think junior hockey, especially where I played, is a lot of run-and-gun. You can get away with a lot of the cheating offensively and not playing so well in the defensive zone, and you can make up for it. But when you get to the pro ranks, you make one bad turnover, you cheat and you give the other team a chance to score, and they’re going to put it in your net. The biggest thing was for me the last two years just working on that, and being on the right side of the puck. It’s actually really helping me in my offensive side of the game.
On reuniting the Pearson-Vey-Toffoli line at rookie camp:
For us, it’s easy when you’ve played with the two guys for the whole year, and especially with the chemistry we have. It’s good to be back. We looked forward to this all summer, getting back into camp and starting the season, and it’s obviously real comfortable for us, and we’re looking forward to the game.