31 in 31: Top Ten Prospect Series Vol. 14 – Los Angeles Kings

Los Angeles Kings

Welcome back to my 31 in 31 top ten prospects series.

Last time, we took a look at the Florida Panthers’ farm system and the youth looking to eventually represent them, with their pool highlighted by Henrik Borgstrom, Owen Tippett, and Aleksi Heponiemi. Today, we’re going to take a look at the prospect system of the once-dominant Los Angeles Kings and the slowly rising prospect system they’ve got going. With that said, let’s dive into it.

1. Rasmus Kupari (C, 1st Round, 20th Overall in 2018)

Kupari was initially a projected top 10 pick in 2018 but slid down to 20th come draft time. Needless to say, the Los Angeles Kings were more than happy to pick up their now-top prospect in that slot. The 6’1 Finnish native is currently playing with Karpat of the SM-Liiga and currently has 23 points in 20 games. As an 18 year old playing against men, these are spectacular totals. Seeing how much the Kings are struggling with offense this year, it wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see Kupari in the NHL next season.

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2. Gabriel Vilardi (C, 1st Round, 11th Overall in 2017)

The Los Angeles Kings made a pair of pretty solid first round picks in back to back seasons with Vilardi and then Kupari. The 6’3 Kingston native was held out of the beginning of this season with an injury and has now played four games with the Ontario Reign of the AHL, putting up one point. He is going to represent Team Canada at the World Juniors this season and will look to continue his development in the AHL.

3. Kale Clague (D, 2nd Round, 51st Overall in 2016)

After terrorizing the WHL last season with a combined 71 points in 54 games between the Brandon Wheat Kings and the Moose Jaw Warriors, Clague earned third place on my top ten list for the Los Angeles Kings. He’s currently in his first AHL season and so far has nine points in 21 games for the Ontario Reign.

4. Jaret Anderson-Dolan (C, 2nd Round, 41st Overall in 2017)

Anderson-Dolan tore up the WHL with the Spokane Chiefs last year, putting up 91 points in 70 games. His play was good enough to give him a spot with the Los Angeles Kings to start the season, but he was sent back to the WHL after five games. He’s unfortunately been injured for a lot of the season, having only played two WHL games, but he’s looking to represent Team Canada at the World Juniors.

5. Akil Thomas (C, 2nd Round, 51st Overall in 2018)

After being forever known as a team made up of players with good size and physicality, the Kings seem to be trying something new based on their recent draft picks such as Kupari, Anderson-Dolan, and now Thomas. The Toronto native is a part of the incredibly stacked Niagara IceDogs this season and has been one of their top producers with 39 points in 26 games so far.

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6. Daniel Brickley (D, Undrafted, Signed in 2018)

After an amazing senior season with Minnesota State University of the NCAA where he recorded 35 points in 40 games, the Salt Lake City native was inked to an entry level deal with the Kings and has spent his first season with the organization developing with the Ontario Reign, where he has five points in 21 games. He’s the younger brother of AHL journeyman Connor Brickley.

7. Mikey Eyssimont (C, 5th Round, 142nd Overall in 2016)

Mikey Eyssimont spent the last three seasons playing for St. Cloud University of the NCAA and after a successful final season that saw him put up 39 points in 39 games, he made the transition to the AHL where he’s currently playing in his first season with the Kings. He has nine points in 21 games thus far.

8. Mikey Anderson (D, 4th Round, 103rd Overall in 2017)

Even if this entire list turns out to be busts, the Kings will be able to say that they’re the only organization with two top prospects who go by Mikey. So that’s pretty cool. In all seriousness though, the Kings drafted Anderson in the fourth round in 2017 and he’s currently playing for the University of Minnesota-Duluth where he has seven points in 16 games. He’s likely going to be representing the United States at the World Juniors this year too.

9. Alexander Dergachyov (C, 3rd Round, 74th Overall in 2015)

Dergachyov is an absolute monster on skates and he’s the type of prospect who will be playing out the majority of his development in his native Russia. He’s currently playing for SKA St. Petersburg and has six points in 19 games thus far.

10. Brad Morrison (C, 4th Round, 113th Overall in 2015)

Morrison wasn’t looking like too sharp of a prospect seeing his totals in his final WHL season, but he’s been producing at a solid rate for the Ontario Reign this season with 11 points in his first 19 games. If he keeps producing he could end up being a solid depth centre for the Kings.

Thanks for reading! Tune in next time where we’ll go over the Minnesota Wild’s top ten prospects.

stats from eliteprospects.com

featured image photo credit – Nikos Michals

Author: Alex Hobson