LA Kings: Maple Leafs play-in round has enormous implications on draft

(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
(Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /

An amendment to the LA Kings and Toronto Maple Leafs trade involving Kyle Clifford and Jack Campbell could net a second-round pick.

While the LA Kings will not be partaking in the NHL’s 24-team playoff format, Kings fans can still have a vested interest in watching the playoffs.

According to Chris Johnston of Canada’s Sportnet, if the Maple Leafs win their play-in round series and Jack Campbell records two or more wins, the LA Kings will receive a 2021 second-round pick. They can achieve the same outcome if the Leafs re-sign forward Kyle Clifford in the offseason.

If you recall, the original deal sent Clifford and Campbell to Toronto for forward Trevor Moore, a third-round pick in this year’s draft, and a conditional 2021 third-round pick.

Clifford, 29, was drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2009 NHL Draft and won two Stanley Cups during his tenure in LA. He tallied 60 goals with 69 assists in 9.5 seasons and scored six goals with eight assists prior to being traded.

In 16 games with the Leafs, he found the net once with two assists. According to Evolving Hockey, the Ontario native is projected to receive a two-year deal at a $1.7M AAV.

Campbell was a first-round pick of the Dallas Stars in 2010, but he was traded to the Kings for defenseman Nick Ebert in June 2016. He’s under contract for two more years and quietly put up a respectable season, recording a .915 save percentage and a 2.63 GAA.

He landed on the Maple Leafs radar when goalie Frederik Andersen sustained a neck injury in early February, returning in mid-February. Andersen recorded a .905 save percentage in ten games post-injury, compared to a .910 save percentage in 42 games prior.

The Maple Leafs open their qualifying round against the Columbus Blue Jackets today.