Happy Wednesday, insiders!
Not the perfect start, eh? A challenging final minute last night that separated at least one point in the standings, and a two-point chance, from scratch earned by the Kings. Self-inflicted damage wasn’t a staple of last season’s squad, but the Kings had several moments last night when they hurt themselves and that translated into goals against them.
More is coming to the NHL club later in the day, after we see how today’s practice goes.
Some other notes for this morning –
Bateman attends opening night
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman was among the attendees at Opening Night in Los Angeles.
Bettman addressed a wide range of issues, although few really concerned royalty. Bettman indicated that he has no updates regarding the future of outdoor games, while preparations are underway for a potential Hockey World Cup, noting that the best-ever international competition is a very important thing for players. Buttman noted that there is market interest in a potential expansion, but there are no plans to do so at the moment. In addition, Bettman confirmed that investigations are currently underway as it relates to larger issues such as the situation with Hockey Canada.
Bettman about the atmosphere and experience at the Crypto.com Arena
I always love coming to this building. I understand that during the summer they did some renovations to the building which is great, it shows commitment to community and excellence. It’s a fun place to watch a game, the building tonight is great and that’s with the Dodgers playing on the other side of town.
About a possible Hockey World Cup
We are still working on it. It’s complicated, we do it jointly with the players union, there are a lot of moving parts and we have to get the parts to stop moving so we can put them together. I am an optimist and I am an optimist, I know it is important for the players to have the best international competition. When you look at the composition of our group of players, it makes for a great tournament.
on potential salary cap increases in the future
The cap basically only goes up by a million a year until the escrow is paid, and people tend to forget that the escrow got so big during COVID, because even when the revenue went down, we’ve been paying according to the contracts. We are approaching. Two more years max and we have to repay it and then it’s back again.
Reign List Moves
Ontario Reign announced a pair of transactions yesterday. Forward Nate Thompson, who was in training camp with the Kings on a PTO, signed PTO with Ontario. In addition, the Kings reassigned goalkeeper David Hrinak of Ontario to the ECHL’s Greenville Swamp Rabbits.
On Thompson, the veteran skated in 33 NHL games last season with the Philadelphia Flyers, notching a goal and assisting twice. In his 17-year professional career, Thompson appeared in 844 NHL games and 221 AHL games, including 79 games played for the Kings during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons. Thompson’s career has also included time with Islanders of New York, Tampa Bay Lightning, Anaheim Ducks, Ottawa Senators, and Montreal Canadiens.
The AHL PTO offers both player and team a great deal of flexibility, as it can essentially be canceled by either side at any time. In Reign’s view, adding a strong veteran presence to the squad is a huge plus, not to mention a player with over 1,000 professional games of experience. Thompson has a desire to play and should make a positive impact on Ontario’s young pool of players. It also offers him the flexibility to sign an NHL contract down the road with any of the league’s 32 teams, should that opportunity arise.
In Hrenak, this is a move that was expected to come assuming full health in goal-guiding mode. The 24-year-old rookie is on a one-year contract and needs to play a game during his first professional season. With Jonathan Quick and Cal Petersen at the NHL level, and the duo of Pheonix Copley and Matt Villalta at the AHL level, ECHL provides an opportunity for Hrenak to play regularly. The Kings signed an official ECHL agreement with Greenville over the summer, with one of the perks of this arrangement being playing for at least one goalkeeper. The Swamp Rabbits open their season on Saturday, October 22 with two games over the opening weekend.
Greenville goalkeeper coach Andrew Lord gets minutes from ECHL
Yes, it is critical. I mean, I think if you asked any of the six goalkeepers, they would probably say six is too many, but actually, it’s not that many bodies when you think about the rest of the lineup, there’s a lot more in the other positions, obviously There is a greater need for her. Still trying to find some buttons from this low count and need development. As Glenn Murray said in our press conference, the best way to develop is to play and that couldn’t be healthier than a goalkeeper position. We play 72 games, we play a lot of three on three so it’s a perfect opportunity to go with a couple of goalkeepers and try to manage the workload, manage loads wisely, and it’s a pretty cool opportunity for whoever we get. Really well, there’s a lot of visits from the goalkeeper crew, constant phone calls, zooming in and I’m sure video content mingles there as well. I am a firm believer in him. I think you’ve seen a lot of goalkeepers from our league make the National Hockey League over time.
Seely season look forward
Finally, Ontario Reign General Manager Richard Seeley joined the Reign Check podcast yesterday for a preview of the upcoming season. Audio is embedded above, with two selections posted below.
Seely the team they met over the past week
For the first time, we covenant. We are starting to build our culture now. We’ve been through a bit, but you’ve been through a transition with players coming in and going out, and now we’re a little bit of our own practice with our own strong play and PKs, so we’re starting to build our identity which is exciting. I enjoy watching Marco and his staff at work and seeing where they go with things and what they choose to organize for practice.
About where Martin Chromiak is now unlike during his brief AHL appearance in 2021
When we saw him at the end of the covid-19 year, he came and he was good. Really likeable player, younger, professional, excellent shooting release, sort of goal-scoring instinct for me, you’ll see a little bit there. Very powerful, good move, so the skill set is really strong. I don’t want to set high expectations, I really like Martin Krumiac as a person and as a player, but there is a lot of work to do. We’ll see where it goes, we want to try and give him chances to be successful, I think for him, trying to get the disc in the hole and get into those areas, but he’s also coming from OHL and he’s 20 years old, usually the biggest leap These players will face it in the pros is the first year professionally. Even that jump from the juniors to the MLS would be a challenge for him. So I think he’s going to have some ups and downs, and I think there are going to be some nights where he’s been top scorer there Saturday night with great advice, and then there are going to be some nights where we want him to continue. To work on some things but in the long run I’m really excited about Martin Kromiak and in the short term our goal is to try to improve it every day. A few little habits and how he handles the game and we feel we have a good group of seasoned leaders and players around him to learn from.
Practice keeping up, Insiders! The kings are on ice soon and we’ll be checking in after the team is off the ice. talk soon!
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