Two Los Angeles Kings prospects led their respective leagues in scoring during the 2010-11 season — Tyler Toffoli of the Ontario Hockey League and Linden Vey of the Western Hockey League.
Toffoli, 19, played in the OHL for the Ottawa 67’s from 2008-09 through last season. His goal totals have jumped by 20 from each season to the next — 17 the first year, then 37 and 57 most recently. His assist totals went from 29 to 42 to 51; points, from 46 to 79 to 108.
The Kings drafted Toffoli in the second round with the 47th pick of the 2010 NHL Draft.
L.A. assistant general manager Ron Hextall thinks Toffoli has improved but still has room to grow, according to the Los Angeles Times:
He’s got to round out his game a little bit but I think the offensive part of his game is absolutely outstanding and that’s the hardest part to teach,” Hextall said.
“He’s been working on his skating. I see a slight improvement. He’s got to continue to work on it. But overall he’s come a long ways. He had a great year last year.”
Toffoli is now with the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League. He scored a goal in his only game thus far with the Monarchs.
He was rated the Kings’ fourth-best prospect by website HockeysFuture.com.
Vey, 20, has been a member of the WHL’s Medicine Hat Tigers since the 2006-07 season. He was drafted by the Kings as the 96th pick of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, getting selected in the fourth round.
2008-09 was the first season to see Vey exceed 70 games played; the most he had played prior was 48. That season, he scored 24 goals in 71 games. In 2009-10, he again scored 24 goals, this times in 72 games. Last season, his games played slipped to 69, but he found the back of the net 46 times.
His assist and point totals also stayed about the same over those two seasons before seeing a marked increase last season. He tallied 48 assists and 72 points in 08-09 and went 51, 75 the following season.
Last season, those figures spiked to 70 and 116.
Hextall spoke highly of Vey in the Times.
“He’s a very skilled player. He’s got very good hockey sense and he sees the ice well and he just makes the right play at the right time and we’re excited about him,” Hextall said. “He’s a good prospect. His skill certainly stands above most guys.”
Expect Toffoli and Vey to be in Manchester coming out of training camp with the Kings, but both could prove to be true bright spots in L.A.’s future.