The Los Angeles Kings have undergone an entire front office change in the last few years, a new head coach this past summer and the team also quietly added former Philadelphia Flyers’ general manager Ron Hextall as a part-time advisor to hockey operations. The Kings believe that Hextall will be a key asset, especially with his strength as a GM with rebuilding a franchise like he did in Philadelphia.
In fact, team President Luc Robitaille feels the team’s rebuilding effort should really be helped by Hextall’s presence, especially with his experience on the East Coast, which should give the team another big advantage.
“… for me, you look at the job he’s done in Philly, he’s done a tremendous job at rebuilding a team,” said Robitaille in a Q&A with Fox Sports’ Jon Rosen. “Everybody talks about all their prospects and so forth, so we know he’s had the experience of picking the right guys, and plus he knows the east coast, and I know Rob’s going to use him to do some scouting and work on several projects, so it’s a win for us. The influence he had on our staff and our players here was great, so to have the opportunity to have a guy like that and see where it goes, it’s going to help us.”
- The Province’s Patrick Johnston writes that Vancouver Canucks veteran Loui Eriksson will be a healthy scratch tonight against the Calgary Flames for just the second time in his Canucks’ career. The much criticized Eriksson debuted against Edmonton on Wednesday and played 13:12, but finished with just one shot on goal and a stat line with a lot of zeros, not including the minus-1 plus/minus. Not a good sign for a player in the fourth year of a six-year, $36MM player. Head coach Travis Green intends to insert young center Adam Gaudette into the lineup instead, who impressed many during training camp to win a spot in the lineup despite being one of the few waiver eligible players.
- The Edmonton Oilers need to get some production from some of their forward prospects and the Edmonton Journal’s David Staples writes that they may finally have a healthy Kailer Yamamoto who could eventually be pushing his way back into the Oilers’ lineup. The 2017 first-round pick struggled with a wrist injury last year and didn’t look like himself, but now with the Bakersfield Condors of the AHL on their top line, Yamamoto looks like his old self. The 21-year-old could be at the top of the forwards battling for the first crack at the Oilers lineup after an impressive first game Friday, including a big goal.