It's so tough being a fan of a hockey team that is so much better than its record indicates. After a 3-2 overtime win against the high flying Detroit Red Wings, the Los Angeles Kings have compiled a record of 15-10-0.
In the tight Western Conference standings, the Kings managed to jump all the way up to fourth with 30 points through 25 games. At that pace, the Kings would compile 98 points this season. Considering the immense success last season and the great pressure on the team this season, 98 points just isn't good enough.
With names like Drew Doughty and Anze Kopitar not playing up to expectations (Doughty more than Kopitar), it's not a big surprise that the team isn't where the fans want it to be.
Many fans, myself included, are calling on Dean Lombardi to make some sort of move to address the team's incredible lack of scoring prowess.
A couple of days ago, it looked as though Lombardi had answered our prayers by acquiring Marco Sturm for a conditional fifth-round draft pick. Now I'm not a National Hockey League general manager, but I do think that giving up a fifth-round draft pick for a guy who can score you 20 goals is a good deal.
Sturm reportedly waived his no-trade clause to come to Los Angeles before the deal was called off. There has been lots of speculation as to why the deal was cancelled with most people coming to the consensus that Sturm's lingering injury has something to do with it.
Will the Kings be the team to acquire Marco Sturm?
Before we venture deeper into what could have been, we must fully understand what is going on with the Boston Bruins.
To start the season, both Marco Sturm and Marc Savard were injured for the Bruins. These injuries brought Bruins' management a little bit of time to play around with the salary cap. In the mainstream media, much has been made about the cap woes plaguing Peter Chiarelli.
Knowing that Savard and Sturm would be re-joining the team around December, Chiarelli knew that he had to clear some cap space. Names were thrown out like wild fire with the likes of Ryder, Savard, Sturm and even former Vezina trophy goaltender, Tim Thomas.
There was no stopping the rumors that were rapidly heating up around the league.
Now, with Savard back and Sturm's return pending, the Bruins are in a very desperate situation. Every team in the league knows that Boston is going to have to give away a very talented player for nearly nothing. They need to clear a fair chunk of change from their payroll.
With the Kings' scoring woes, many people thought that Dean Lombardi would be the first National Hockey League general manager to jump upon the Bruins' problems. When Bob McKenzie reported that the Kings had acquired Marco Sturm, it looked as though the job of acquiring a scoring winger for Anze Kopitar was done.
Marco Sturm has never been a dominant offensive force in the NHL but he has been a solid point producer for a long time. At 32 years of age, he is on the downside of his career but it appears as though he might have a few good years left in him.
The thought Lombardi had was that Sturm could play right beside Kopitar, one of the premier power centers in the league, and rack up 15 to 20 goals before the season ended. By that time, he would have meshed with his new teammates and been ready for the playoffs.
In a dream world, all of this would have come true. In reality, we are still left with cap woes for the Bruins and a lack of scoring in Los Angeles.
The one thing that a lot of people forget about Sturm is his experience playing in the Western Conference. The difference in play and travel between East and West is incredible. For Dean Lombardi, having a player who knows what it means to grind out a season in the treacherous Western Conference is a huge attribute.
With the Kings in a little bit of a tailspin and the Bruins needing to clear room, don't count this deal out. Many sources are claiming that this deal is still on the table and just waiting for Sturm to get healthy.
If he does join the Kings, his offense would be an immediate boost to a team that is having a lot of trouble lighting the lamp this year. Despite a breakout performance from Justin Williams, the Kings just don't seem to have enough up front.
Through 25 games, we have seen enough games to make a real judgement on this team. The glaring needs from the offseason really weren't addressed by Dean Lombardi and they are still staring each fan straight in the face.
If the Kings truly want to make a run at Lord Stanley's cup, they will attack a player through trade. Marco Sturm could be that player.
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