Tantalizing mix of speed, skill, and strength. Projects as a superstar pivot.
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December 2022 – After being assigned to AHL Ontario on a conditioning stint following a non-covid illness, Byfield has become a major threat and appears to be showing flashes of the potential that made him the second overall selection in the 2020 NHL Draft. Since joining the AHL squad, Byfield has put up a point-per-game effort with nine goals and 14 points in that span and has made a tremendous mark on both special teams.
While it may seem like Byfield has been around longer than just a season or two, he is still just 20 years old and still has plenty of time to reach his potential as a dominant force at the NHL level and in fantasy lineups. While it may be enticing to move him off dynasty and keeper league rosters, Byfield may only reach his potential as a number one centre once Anze Kopitar’s deal expires after the 2023-24 season. Even then, Byfield’s upside in the fantasy realm is far too high to give up on now considering how high he would have gone in prospect drafts around the fantasy world. He will get there, patience is paramount. Sean Crocker
April 2022 – Byfield missed the start of the 2021-22 season due to a fractured left ankle sustained at the end of the preseason. Byfield has since added six points in 11 games with the Ontario Reign, earning him a call up to the Kings early in the new year. Generating what seems to be a measly eight points in 32 games so far this season, Byfield has been used largely in a third-line shutdown role. This will not hamper Byfield’s ability to eventually become a premier goal scoring power forward at the NHL level. The hulking centre should be given every opportunity in the fall to contribute offensively in a top-six role. Consider this one of the few remaining buy-low opportunities for the 6-4 pivot. While he may not realize his supreme offensive upside immediately, Byfield’s ceiling as a premier goal scorer in the NHL remains among the highest of all drafted prospects. Patience is a virtue with Byfield for fantasy owners. When he takes off, he has the chance to become a top 30 player in fantasy hockey. Sean Crocker
April 2021 – The Kings got a look at their 2020 second overall pick after he was recalled and made his NHL debut on April 28th, 2021. He was recalled earlier in the week and saw his first taste of NHL action against the Anaheim Ducks and centered the team’s third line alongside Adrian Kempe and Trevor Moore. He played pretty significant minutes averaging just under 18 minutes of ice time with four shots on goal and a minus one rating. The playing time is encouraging and shows the Kings really want to get a good look at their young pivot and as the season winds down could get a look at the team’s powerplay. He will likely play under ten games to ensure a year is not burned off his entry-level deal and his fantasy upside is limited this year considering that most people are in the middle of their fantasy playoff run. He could be used as a streamer if they give him a look in the top-six forward group. If you’re in a keeper league and out of playoff contention he is a must-add for his immense upside next season where he should be given every opportunity to crack the NHL roster. Julian Mongillo
April 2021 – Byfield who already had a strong showing at the 2021 World Junior Tournament is beginning to show his dominance at the AHL level. The big center is benefiting greatly from the postponement of the OHL season’s return to play being able to get regular playing time at the professional level. He is up to 16 points through his first 21 games with the Ontario Reign despite being featured primarily in a third-line role because of the teams’ depth at center. Byfield is NHL ready and while he likely won’t be up with the Kings this season, he should be a lock to make the team out of camp next season. Until then enjoy watching him dominate in the minors where he will hopefully play out the year. Julian Mongillo
December 2020 – To no one’s surprise, Byfield has been named to Canada’s World Junior Championship roster. With the injury to Kirby Dach, there will be more eyes on the second overall pick of the 2020 NHL Entry Draft. He has played mainly in a third-line role thanks to the depth of Canada’s roster and is up to seven points through the first three games. It will be interesting to see what the Kings decide to do with the youngster should the OHL choose to refrain from playing this season which would likely force the Kings hand to fast-track his development in the AHL or even on a potential NHL taxi squad. Julian Mongillo
October 2020 – The Los Angeles Kings latest first-round selection Quinton Byfield has inked a three-year entry-level contract with the team. The second overall pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft will be given the opportunity to force his way onto the team out of training camp, however, it is more likely that Byfield will return to Junior for another year. With the Kings’ deep prospect pool it is likely they take their time with Byfield’s development and give him the best opportunity to succeed once the franchise is on the upswing from the rebuild. Julian Mongillo
October 2020 – Byfield was drafted second overall by the Kings. Byfield was second on most pre-draft rankings, so it does not come as a surprise. Byfield could push for an NHL spot right away but could also benefit from more time in the OHL. His long-term upside is among the highest in this draft class. Pat Quinn
July 2020 – Quinton Byfield dealt with injuries a couple of times this season and had his year shortened because of the pandemic but his 1.82 points-per-game finished tied with Cole Perfetti for fifth in the OHL. Only league leader Marco Rossi finished ahead of him among draft-eligible players. He recorded three-plus points in 13 of his 45 contests and reached the five-point mark on two occasions. There were flashes of dominance throughout the season and yet there still seems to be so much left to unearth in Byfield’s game. His combination of size, skating, and skill give him a truly unique package that could make him the best player in the 2020 NHL Draft. Byfield has the ability to be a difference-maker in all areas of the game. Should he be given a proper chance to develop with a smart team and highly attentive development staff, Byfield has the chance to be one of the best centers in the NHL. The Sudbury Wolves star had some struggles this season to be sure but the still 17-year-old is one of the youngest members of the 2020 draft. His production at this stage of his development is special. Having anyone else as your number two, fantasy or otherwise, may look like a silly decision in a couple of years’ time. Tony Ferrari
February 2020 – After a less-than-stellar performance at the WJC (mostly due to a severe lack of ice time) Byfield has returned to Sudbury and done what he always does – rack up major point totals. The massive pivot prospect currently sits 10th in OHL scoring with 74 points in just 40 contests. While there are likely several players who are better than he is at this moment, his age coupled with his massive potential make him a near shoo-in to go second overall when the draft begins this June. He’ll be a player to target early in all league types. Cam Robinson
November 2019 – The towering 17-year-old has been utterly dominant early on this season. His 39 points in 21 contests sit second in the OHL thus far. The scariest part of Byfield’s game is how quickly he adapts and improves. The upside has always been drool-worthy, but as we begin to witness him slowly scratch the surface of that potential it becomes all the more impressive. Go get those lottery picks. And if you miss out on first overall, you’re not settling. Byfield will be a major difference-maker and a potential cornerstone piece before he leaves his teens. Cam Robinson
July 2019 – The reigning CHL Rookie of the Year is also one of the younger prospects eligible for the 2020 draft. Despite his age, his physical tools are already light years ahead of his peers. Byfield possesses freakish strength to go along with speed, skill, and the processing speed necessary to thrive. He’ll be a major part of the Canadian squad at the Hlinka and U18 Worlds and will push for a spot at the U20 World Junior Championships. If there is one player who can challenge Alexis Lafreniére for the top spot in this class, it’s Byfield. Cam Robinson