Los Angeles’ “That 70s Line” was dominant over the first month of the season and, on Monday, the line’s leading goalscorer netted a major award.
Tanner Pearson, currently tied for fourth in the NHL with seven goals, was named October’s Rookie of the Month, the league announced. The 22-year-old finished the month with nine points in 11 games and a plus-9 rating, and currently sits second in rookie scoring to Nashville’s Filip Forsberg (who finished October with eight points, but jumped to 11 following a three-point outing in Sunday’s win over Vancouver).
Pearson, the Kings’ first-round pick (30th overall) at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, has been a productive contributor since making his debut at the tail end of last season. He scored seven points in 25 games, then broke out with four goals and 12 points in 24 games, helping the Kings capture their second Stanley Cup in three seasons.
As for other rookies that starred during the opening month:
— New Jersey’s Damon Severson led all first-year blueliners with four goals and seven points. He’s also currently leading all first-year skaters in TOI per game, at 21:59.
— Washington forward Andre Burakovsky finished with two goals and eight points, finishing the month tied with Forsberg for second among rookie scorers.