Los Angeles Kings: Top 3 young players to watch next season

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Calvin Petersen #40 of the Los Angeles Kings (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Which young players could make a huge impact on the Los Angeles Kings next season?

The Los Angeles Kings are officially in the rebuilding process. Whenever the 2020-21 season happens, winning won’t define whether or not it will be a successful season. Sure, winning would be nice, but the Kings could easily have a very successful season while still not winning games.

Rather, their success will be measured by the development of their key young players. The Kings have an impressive core of young players, as The Athletic recently ranked their pool of players 22 years old or younger 13th in the league. The main reason they weren’t higher, according to Corey Pronman, is because there’s a lot of projection and not too much NHL certainty among their young players.

Considering they were the ninth-oldest team during the 2019-20 season, that’s a fair assessment. Only two players 22 years or younger played in over 20 games for the Kings (Austin Wagner and Blake Lizotte both played in 65 games).

It’s been painful the past two seasons, but the 2020-21 season is when some of the Kings young players should be ready to make an impact. Let’s take a look at three young Los Angeles Kings who could turn some heads next season.

3. Calvin Petersen

In a very limited sample size of 19 NHL games over the past two seasons, Calvin Petersen has been quite impressive. You should take any sample size that small with a grain of salt, but Petersen posted a .923% save percentage in those 19 games.

He hasn’t seen much time in the NHL because for a while, the Kings’ crease was simply too crowded. Between Jonathan Quick and Jack Campbell, there wasn’t any room for Petersen on the NHL roster.

At the trade deadline, the Kings traded Campbell to the Toronto Maple Leafs and that should give the team a chance to see what Petersen can do with a more steady and consistent role. The Kings wouldn’t have traded Campbell if they weren’t confident in the soon-to-be 26 years old Petersen.

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