Los Angeles Kings Coach Scott Stevens on rookie forward and former Bulldogs standout Alex Iafallo’s progression (Source: LAKingsInsider.com):
“He’s been terrific. I think you’re always looking for a pleasant surprise in training camp, and we were kind of cautiously optimistic about Alex, seeing him in development camp and then rookie camp, and you want to wait to see him with the pros and see how he does and see if he can be the same player, and he’s been able to do that. He’s got a real well-rounded game, he’s tenacious. He’s been able to go to the next level of play and not just playing in regular season games, but playing with high-end players and be the same player, and that’s what you hope for every young player – that he doesn’t change his game because he’s playing with Kopitar and maybe not do the things that are instinctive to him, whether he’s playing with Kopitar or he’s playing with me, and Alex has had an ability to do it. It’s not often you see that the first time through it, but he’s done a really good job with it.
[Reporter: Do you have to keep your eye on him just maybe a shift or two tomorrow — the old ‘first time against the hometown team?’ He might really be sky high?]. Jeez, I don’t know. He’s up in Minnesota-Duluth, he’s next door to Santa Claus there for a long time. He’s been gone long enough that that’s not a big concern.
[Reporter: He was pretty stoked, though.] Yeah, and that’s good for him. The one thing we did talk about, just the schedule and not so much who we’re playing, but the schedule hasn’t changed too much in terms of what he’s used to. But you’re going to get to a point now where you’re playing every other day, which you might not be used to, but I know he’s an upstate New York kid, so playing against his home team is probably a pretty exciting moment for him.”