This past week the Los Angeles Kings held their annual developmental camp at their training facility in El Segundo.
It’s a time when their stars of the future, like this year’s second-round draft pick Valentin Zykov and others like Nick Shore (2011, 3rd round) and Derek Forbort (2010, 15th overall), are brought together to compete against one another, as well as, learn from the teams coaches and scouts about the aspects of NHL life — both on and off the ice.
While most of the players on the ice may only be known by the true die hard Kings fan, one name that everybody recognized at the camp was Tyler Toffoli — the same Tyler Toffoli that played in a combined 22 regular season and playoff games this past season.
Why would a player who already has NHL experience need to be at this camp? For starters, Toffoli is just 21-years-old with less than a full season of NHL experience.
While he would appear to be all but a lock for a spot on one of the Kings top two forward lines, he still has a lot of learning and growing to do on the NHL level.
“That’s just the way it goes with L.A., it’s how they bring all their players up. It just gives me another opportunity to keep getting better,” Toffoli said.
“It’s a pretty tough camp. The days are long. I’ve been working really hard this summer trying to get bigger stronger, so I can win those battles along the boards. I don’t want to just be in good shape. I want to be in the best shape possible. It’s good to be a part of the camp.”
There is one other reason why the Kings want Toffoli’s presence at the camp.
“To be a leader, obviously,” Toffoli added. “But at the same time I have to worry about myself and worry about myself getting better and working on my game to get to the next level.”
Off the ice, Kings general manager Dean Lombardi updated the status of Jarret Stoll’s health. Stoll, who was rushed to hospital after suffering a seizure back on July 3 is doing fine. He has been riding the bike with no setbacks. There are still no answers for what caused the seizure.
On the contract front, restricted free agents Trevor Lewis, Alec Martinez, Jake Muzzin and Jordan Nolan all filed for salary arbitration. Don’t be surprised if all four sign contracts before their cases go to arbitration.