Here are three LA Kings prospects that are breakout candidates in the 2021 World Junior Championships tournament.
In just over a week’s time, the National Hockey League’s top prospects will partake in one of the best tournaments around. And for the second consecutive season, the LA Kings will be well-represented at the World Junior Championships, sending nine players from the prospect pool from six different countries.
A quick refresher:
- Team USA (Alex Turcotte, Arthur Kaliyev, Brock Faber)
- Team Canada (Quinton Byfield, Jordan Spence)
- Team Sweden (Tobias Bjornfot)
- Team Finland (Kasper Simontaival)
- Team Slovakia (Martin Chromiak)
- Team Czech Republic (Lukas Parik)
At last year’s World Juniors, Samuel Fagemo and Arthur Kaliyev broke out in a big way. Both players were drafted in the second round of the 2019 NHL Draft, establishing themselves as top prospects in the Kings’ organizations with strong performances at the WJC.
Fagemo spent last year with Frolunda of the SHL, scoring 13 goals with nine assists in 42 games. His 22 points were seventh-best on Frolunda, but he turned it on in International play. Fagemo tallied eight goals in seven games with five assists, leading the tournament in both goals and points.
"“He didn’t play like this his draft year. Not even close,” said Mark Yannetti. “Our biggest complaint his draft year was that the guy’s got speed, but he doesn’t attack, he doesn’t compete. His game was incomplete and inconsistent. I think it was an eye-opener for him when he didn’t get drafted and sometimes you need that experience to push you forward.”"
Unlike Fagemo, Arthur Kaliyev was a point-producing machine before the WJC. He flirted with back-to-back 100-point seasons with the Hamilton Bulldogs of the OHL. In the World Juniors, the 18-year-old tallied four games with two assists in five games.
Who are breakout candidates for the LA Kings at the 2021 World Juniors?