Los Angeles Kings forward Kevin Fiala has returned in time for training camp from an injury suffered late last season. Fiala has shown no signs of fatigue or lack of speed as he was seen flying around during training camp. Fiala did appear in the teams exhibition game against the Arizona Coyotes in Melbourne, Australia.
Fiala was acquired from the Minnesota Wild on June 30, 2022 for defenseman Brock Faber and a 2022 1st round pick. He was a big time player for Los Angeles last season. In 69 games, he totaled 23 goals and 49 assists for 72 points and 52 penalty minutes. He was also productive in the postseason, scoring one goal and five assists for six points in three games.
Fiala suffered a leg injury in the late stages of the second period of a game against the Colorado Avalanche when he collided with Avalanche forward Andrew Cogliano. He would return and play one more shift before exiting the game and would not return in the season’s final month.
During training camp, Fiala looks refreshed and fully healed from his injury and appears ready to go. He has shown no effects of an injury and could be in for a big season as he is projected to be a winger on the same line with newcomer Pierre-Luc Dubois. The pair has looked good in camp and are expected to start the season on the same line.
Last season, Fiala struggled mid-season and head coach Todd McLellan shuffled him between the second and third lines. While still productive, Fiala did not seem to fit in with his new line mates. Fiala brings a non-stop energy that allows him to be successful on the penalty kill and skating through the neutral zone with, or without, the puck. His teammates also benefit from him being in the lineup as he brings confidence and offensive creativity.
The 5-foot-10 winger out of Switzerland may be in line for career highs offensively this season. Dubois likely will be a big part of Fiala’s success this season as they both supply a high-octan offense that will help the Kings come playoff time. The Kings preseason concludes on Saturday, October 7th against the Vegas Golden Knights and the regular season starts on Wednesday, October 11th, against the Colorado Avalanche.
(photo: lakingsinsider.com; Zach Dooley) (photo: nhlpa.com;Chris Lomon)