WHAT: AHL PRESEASON GAME
WHEN: Monday, September 30, 2019 – 7:00 PM
WHERE: Honda Center – Anaheim, CA
HOW TO FOLLOW: VIDEO: None – AUDIO – Mixlr – TWITTER: @ontarioreign & @reigninsider
TONIGHT’S MATCHUP: The Ontario Reign conclude the 2019 preseason with a rematch against the San Diego Gulls. The two teams square off tonight at Honda Center, following San Diego’s 5-2 victory in Ontario on Thursday morning.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: We’ve reached the annual Honda Center preseason contest! Last season’s edition actually provided for an entertaining game, with the Reign coming from behind to secure a late victory, on a Kyle Bauman tally. Expect more players on NHL contracts in the lineup tonight for Ontario, giving some players who did not play the morning game their first action of the preseason, along with try out players fighting for the final spots on the roster.
WHOLA LOTTA LUFF: Ontario forward Matt Luff scored his team’s first goal of the preseason with the game-opening tally on Thursday. Skating on the right wing, alongside Brett Sutter and Lance Bouma, Luff opened the scoring midway through the first period, one of two tallies for the hosts during the opening period. Luff scored at close to a point-per-game pace a season ago (.86 PPG) and will be expected to be a scoring threat again this season when he is in the AHL.
FIRST TIMERS: Forwards Rasmus Kupari and Jaret Anderson-Dolan were assigned to Ontario on Friday and are expected to make their preseason debuts later this evening in Anaheim. Kupari and Anderson-Dolan each saw preseason action with the Kings and remained with the big club past the first set of assignments. Both players are on track to begin their first North American professional seasons with the Reign.
ST. NIK: Reign center Nikolai Prokhorkin was assigned to the team on Saturday, in his first season in the Kings organization. Prokhorkin centered a line of Sheldon Rempal and Lance Bouma during practice yesterday, and could make his Reign debut tonight. Prokhorkin, a 2012 Los Angeles draft pick, signed a one-year, entry-level contract with the Kings this summer – Read more on Prokhorkin from LAKI here.
CAPTAIN CRUNCH: One name to not expect in tonight’s lineup is captain Brett Sutter. Reign Head Coach Mike Stothers said after the Thursday game that Sutter would only play one of two games, and they opted for him to play at home. Sutter is coming off one of the most productive campaigns of his professional career as he broke the 20-goal plateau for the first time, finishing with 21 total tallies.
INJURY UPDATE: Reign forward Drake Rymsha suffered an upper-body injury against San Diego on Thursday. Rymsha did not skate in yesterday’s practice and is considered longer than day-to-day, per Stothers. Rymsha’s absence opens up an opportunity for players on the bubble to either make the roster, or earn more playing time. Rymsha was projected as a bottom-six center and could give others an opportunity in his place.