feature: Mark Morris: An Open Door - LA Kings Insider

I spoke with Manchester Monarchs head coach Mark Morris earlier in the week to detail the success he’s had in a coaching career that has generated 300 wins at both the U.S. collegiate and professional level. No other coach in hockey has ever been able to boast such an accomplishment.

In speaking with Morris and several players, it is clear that his ability to communicate with his players, or as he put it – “making sure you’re getting through to your players and have an open relationship with them so that they feel free to converse with you or your assistants” – has had an impact on his success in developing players. 13 different Kings have at one point benefited from Morris’ teaching.

According to Tyler Toffoli, “He definitely made me earn everything that I got – my ice time, my power play and penalty kill. He just made sure he was on me all the time, and it was just trying to get me better every day,”

“He tries to make everybody feel comfortable. He always has a really young team, and I think he has a core group of guys that have been there. I think the players definitely help out and are always there for each other if you need anything, but at the same time he’s always there to talk to. Obviously he’s got to be hard on everyone, so he kind of plays both sides.” Mark Morris: An Open Door

In speaking with Morris, several topics that we discussed didn’t fully make it into the feature.

Among them:

Morris, on coaching Willie Mitchell at Clarkson University:
Willie was a strong-willed guy, very confident in his abilities. He had a quick temper, and when he arrived on his recruiting trip, he showed up with his fight tapes. He was a big, strong kid, and he always seemed to be doing more knowing full well that he wanted to be an NHLer. So his commitments to his eating habits and his training methods were always far and away beyond any of his teammates at the time. When he came to us, he was a kid that really had to watch his weight. He really tried to watch his diet to make sure that he could keep his weight down, and looking at him today you’d never know that at one point in time that he might have been a little chunkier than he is now. He’s a specimen.

Morris, what he’s watching when he’s watching Tanner Pearson, Linden Vey and Tyler Toffoli playing for the Kings:
I guess like all coaches do, you want to make sure they’re thorough with their games. We know where their strengths are, and we also know the areas of the game that they need to patch up. Being a defensive minded guy, I always want to make sure that our guys are responsible and accountable, and it looks as though they’re earning the trust of the coaching staff of the Kings.

Mark Morris

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

Born: September 13, 1996
Birthplace: Kramfors, SWE
Position: LW
Handedness: Left


Kempe was selected by the Kings in the first round (29th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

Born: December 21, 1993
Birthplace: Eden, NY, USA
Position: C
Handedness: Left


Iafallo was signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on April 18, 2017.

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.

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.