Frozen Royalty: Jake Muzzin Likely To Be Waiting Awhile For His Turn
EL SEGUNDO, CA — Last season, defenseman prospect Jake Muzzin came out of nowhere to make the Los Angeles Kings’ 2010-11 opening night roster, despite having playing in just one regular season game and 13 playoff games at the American Hockey League level in 2009-10.
Prior to that, the 6-3, 213-pound native of Woodstock, Ontario was a standout with the Sault Ste. Marie (Soo) Greyhounds of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) for four seasons, scoring 15 goals and adding 52 assists for 67 points in 64 games with 76 penalty minutes.
That was when he caught the eyes of the Kings scouts. The result: the Kings signed him as an unrestricted free agent on January 4, 2010, to a three-year, entry-level contract.
Muzzin was selected by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the fifth round (141st overall) in the 2007 National Hockey League Entry Draft, but had surgery to repair two herniated discs in 2005, and played sparingly in 2006-07—just 37 games.
Not wanting to take a risk on a young player who already had major back problems, the Penguins did not sign Muzzin to a contract, nor was he selected in the draft by another NHL team. Accordingly, he became an unrestricted free agent during the 2010 off-season.
Last season, Muzzin played in eleven games in two stints with the Kings at the start of the year, recording one assist, before being assigned to the Manchester Monarchs of the AHL (Kings’ primary minor league affiliate) for the remainder of the season on November 23, 2010.
At Manchester, Muzzin scored three goals and tallied 15 assists for 18 points with 39 penalty minutes in 45 regular season games. In seven playoff games, he scored three goals and added an assist.
Looking a year older and more mature, Muzzin participated in the Kings 2011 Development Camp earlier this month.
“Just in his appearance, he’s more mature,” said Kings head coach Terry Murray. “You can see the growth.”
Read the rest on Frozen Royalty