L.A. Kings: Lombardi Pulls the Trigger, Acquires Mike Richards

Michael Stuart@HB_MikeStuartCorrespondent IJune 23, 2011

PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 26:  Mike Richards #18 of the Philadelphia Flyers skates against the Buffalo Sabres in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2011 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center on April 26, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The day Kings fans have been waiting for has finally arrived—Dean Lombardi finally pulled off a big move for the Los Angeles Kings.

After years of watching star players go by in free agency or via trade, Lombardi acquired a star in Mike Richards

You want heart?  Mike Richards has more than most guys in the league.  He was the captain of the Philadelphia Flyers and he will fit in really nicely with the young core of the Los Angeles Kings.

Going the other way are Wayne Simmonds and Brayden Schenn.  An unproven prospect, albeit with a lot of potential, and a solid third-liner in exchange for a really solid first-line player. 

If you ask me, Dean Lombardi won this trade hands down.  The Philadelphia Flyers are in a lot of trouble heading into next season without Mike Richards and Jeff Carter, who was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets earlier in the day.

Time will tell us who really won this deal, but on the surface, I give the title to the Los Angeles Kings.  With Doughty, Johnson, Kopitar and so many other young stars on the Kings, Richards should be able to fit right in and score important points that will help take the Kings to the next level.

The offseason has just started and already there is a sense of optimism that next year could be different for the Los Angeles Kings.  Lombardi made a big splash via this trade, and free agency is right around the corner. 

It's an exciting time to be a Kings fan.  Let's all wait and see what happens in the coming days.

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