In January 2022, a story began to emerge surrounding an eight-year old boy from Pelham, New York and the Kings’ former No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. Both of these humans have a couple things in common, but one very obvious similiarity…their names are both Quinton Byfield.
“Little” Quinton Byfield, as he has been affectionately called, was born in Bronxville, New York to a Canadian mother, Steffanie Willis, and a Jamaican father, Stephen Byfield, which is the same ancestry of the 20-year old Kings’ forward Quinton Byfield.
Born in Newmarket, Ontario, “Big” Quinton Byfield was also born to a Jamaican father, Clinton Byfield, and a Canadian mother, Nicole Kasper. In 2020, Big Quinton became the highest drafted Black person in NHL history, courtesy of the Los Angeles Kings organization.
This began the crossroads where “Little” Quinton found “Big” Quinton on the internet. Both sharing the same skin tone, luscious curly locks, and the exact same name, it was destined that these two hockey players would cross paths at some point.
And that is exactly what happened when Little Quinton found Big Quinton on YouTube when he was searching for clips of NHL shootouts. The rest is history.
Little Quinton became Big Quinton’s biggest fan seemingly overnight, and his parents bought him tickets to see the New York Rangers play the LA Kings in Madison Square Garden on January 24, 2022.
The Rangers came away with the 3-2 win in a shootout and Big Quinton only recorded one shot on goal in 8:32 minutes played on the ice in regulation. He did manage to get a puck past Igor Shesterkin in the shootout, but unfortunately it was not enough to lift the Kings over the Rangers.
The lack of time on the ice was in large part due to the fact that it was his first year playing at the NHL level, and he was coming back from an ankle injury that he sustained in October 2021. But Big Quinton did not let his recent return from injury prevent him from meeting Little Quinton, which only continued the lore of this heart-warming story.
In building a relationship with his adolescent counterpart, Little Quinton’s parents had nothing but kind things to say about Big Quinton, particularly in regards to his character:
"“It’s been so heartwarming as a mom,” Willis said. “To have someone that is such a fantastic hockey player that Quinton can look up to, but more importantly someone who’s so incredibly kind, generous and thoughtful… He’s everything you want your hockey hero to be.”"
At that time, Little Quinton and his family planned to make the trip out to Los Angeles to Crypto.com Arena to watch Big Quinton in his home atmosphere. And just a few days ago that dream finally became a reality.
One year and a couple months later, Little Quinton got to spend some quality time in Los Angeles with his idol and older look-a-like, Kings’ star Quinton Byfield. Little Quinton had the chance to watch Big Quinton skate at practice over the weekend and got the chance to talk to the media again, which only furthers his adolescent stardom.
Little Quinton is a right winger for the Pelham Youth Hockey Association and has become a star at his middle school, Siwanoy Elementary School. And last weekend, he embraced the spotlight in the media hotbed of Los Angeles and owned it in the sweetest way possible.
The lore of this story only continues to grow and it will be continuously heart-warming to watch the relationship between Big Quinton and Little Quinton unfold over time.