The Los Angeles Kings have had a solid roster this season with every type of player playing.

The influx of young stars Alex Turcotte, Brandt Clarke, and Jordan Spence shows the organization is finally playing their prospects when they are ready during the season.

One more player can be added to that list, and that player is Akil Thomas.

Kings’ Thomas Brings Energy, Speed to Lineup

Thomas made his NHL debut in a 4-3 loss against the Winnipeg Jets on Monday, April 1, 2024. While he played only 3:42, he was a -1 and accounted for three hits. He played with emotion, looked comfortable in all three zones, and showcased his tremendous speed on the open ice. He was put in the bottom six and, based on his performance, could see more ice time in his next game.

Thomas was drafted  51st overall in the 2018 NHL Draft and has been with the Ontario Reign of the American Hockey League (AHL), the minor league affiliate of the Kings. He has been a solid contributor in all three zones and continues to shine at the minor-league level. An amazing talent that still has plenty to give, Thomas deserved a shot at the Los Angeles roster before the end of the season, and he earned that well-deserved call-up with his hustle and work ethic.

This season for Ontario, he has played in 61 games and produced 22 goals and 21 assists for 43 points. He has 39 penalty minutes and is a +5. He has been on a roll offensively, scoring five goals and two assists for seven points in his last five games and six goals and two assists for eight points in his last 10. He has played in the middle-six all season, showing up for every shift and taking no games off.

Photo: LA Kings Insider

Before the Reign, he played junior hockey for the Peterborough Petes and Niagra IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), playing four seasons. His point production was effective as he scored 105 goals and 210 assists for 315 points and was a +44. His hard work and consistency paid off, as he was a second-round pick of the Kings. His success would also see him score the game-winning goal for Team Canada during the U20 World Junior Championships during the 2019-20 season.

The 5-foot-11 and 170-pound center is a creative passer in the offensive zone and can contribute on the power play or with his strong penalty kill game. He is a versatile player who can play on any line and can make a difference in any situation. The Toronto, Ontario, Canada native is only 24 years old and can still be a pivotal player within the Los Angeles organization.

With his hard work and dedication, Thomas is also a success away from the ice. He runs a clothing company called Zale Apparel, which embraces his Barbadian heritage. Although he and his dad are from the Toronto area, his mother is of Barbadian heritage. He has designed special jerseys for the Kings to wear during warm-ups during Black History Month.

Thomas earned a shot with the Kings and played well during his limited minutes. He continues to prove to Los Angeles management that he deserves to be a regular on the roster and can play anywhere in the lineup. With his skill set, he could work his way onto the 2024-25 opening night roster with another strong training camp.

Things are looking up for the young Los Angeles forward, and they should be proud of his success on and off the ice.

Photo: Getty Images

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