Kings' Quinton Byfield helped off ice, linesman taken off on stretcher

Quinton Byfield had to be helped off the ice after being injured awkwardly against the boards.

LOS ANGELES -- Centre Quinton Byfield suffered a lower body injury during the third period of the Los Angeles Kings' 4-1 loss to the Arizona Coyotes in a pre-season game Tuesday night, while linesman Ryan Gibbons was taken off on a stretcher after a pre-game collision.

Byfield, a 19-year old centre, hit the corner boards awkwardly during a collision with Arizona right wing Christian Fischer. Byfield was unable to put any weight on his left leg and was helped off the ice.

Coach Todd McLellan said after the game that Byfield will be further evaluated on Wednesday.

``It was a clean hit. It was unfortunate,'' McLellan said of the play. ``He went into the boards. One skate went one way and one the other. It's in a corner. If it is in a straightaway, he would have got away with rolling off but there was nowhere to go. Not a dirty hit.''

Gibbons collided with Arizona's Liam O'Brien after the national anthem and was removed by stretcher. Gibbons appeared to be hit in the head.

The Vancouver native has been an NHL linesman since 2015.

Byfield, a native of Newmarket, Ont., picked second overall by the Kings in the 2020 NHL Draft, had an inside track to centre the fourth line going into next week's regular-season opener. He spent most of last season with Ontario of the American Hockey League, but did play in six games for the Kings, finishing with one assist.

-- With files from Sportsnet

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