Dancing in the Reign: Viatcheslav Voynov; Polish The Pronunciation, Folks
Amidst the Kings’ four-day hiatus from NHL play, take a moment to turn your attention to the Manchester Monarchs. Harvest is looking good on the farm, our New England relatives own the top spot in the AHL‘s Atlantic Division, as well as pertaining themselves to 2nd place in the Eastern Conference and the entire American Hockey League. Now, center your focus on Manchester’s leader in points. Granted, numerous names on the roster have surrendered numbers to Los Angeles promotions, but Viatcheslav Voynov‘s stat-line certainly catches the eye. Voynov leads the Monarchs with 37 points. The native of Chelyabinsk, Russia has 12 goals and 25 assists in 48 games. Add in his rating of +10 and his 115 shots on goal, and you undoubtedly have a promising addition to the Kings’ blue-line next season. Voynov was the Kings’ third overall selection in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, snagged in the 2nd round as the 32nd player announced. Drew Doughty and Colten Teubert preceded Voynov’s selection. To even waste my time analyzing Doughty’s selection would be, well, a waste of time. As for Teubert, he was sidelined in October with a wrist injury and has only dressed in 31 games this season for the Monarchs. Teubert’s progress won’t be as easy to implicate on a stat-sheet, his style attains to regulating defensive zone coverage, comparable to a Rob Scuderi. Both defensemen have the abilities to make the move to Los Angeles in September, but Voynov’s numbers are directing the spotlight.
Once drafted, Voynov left Chelyabinsk Traktor of the Russian Elite League for the Kings’ minor league system. Voynov’s transition to the AHL was smooth to say the least, tallying 23 points in 61 games during the 2008-2009 season, and improved on those numbers during the 2009-2010 season with 29 points in 79 games. The defensive prospect is shattering his output from the previous two seasons, establishing himself as Manchester’s most valuable asset on the blue-line. If Viatcheslav Voynov makes the Kings’ roster out of training camp next season, which I expect, the Kings will have the convenience of icing three offensive defensemen. To say the defensive pairings would be attractive with Voynov’s addition would be an understatement. Dressing three offensive defensemen with Rob Scuderi, Matt Greene, and Willie Mitchell is intriguing. The factor becomes Alec Martinez, the most recent defensive promotion. Dumping Davis Drewiske and Peter Harrold may have to be the harsh answer to Voynov’s inclusion, starting off with Martinez and Voynov rotating the 6th and 7th blue-line spots. Expect Viatcheslav Voynov to remain with the Manchester Monarchs for the remainder of the season in pursuit of the AHL‘s Calder Cup. Expect the 21 year-old prospect to vouch for residence in Manhattan Beach in September.