Marco Sturm was placed on waivers yesterday. Generally this means a team is trying to move a guy to the minors or simply take a chance that someone might want to snag him and free up their roster. I can’t explain it any better than Quisp did at JFTC yesterday, so click the link to get all of the details. In broad strokes, Lombardi placed Sturm on waivers as a way of giving the team roster flexibility since the Kings are at the 23 player max. The risk he ran was Sturm getting picked up by someone, which is exactly what happened.
What stinks about it is that the Kings gave him up for nothing. Granted, they got him for nothing but he was an asset. Sturm recently received a sort of veiled criticism from Terry Murray in the form of the phrase, “On the on-ice part of it, we need more,” (That’s from Rich Hammond). The general consensus was that Sturm just wasn’t bringing what the team needed as a 1st line left-wing.
Sturm is gone now, so the Kings don’t even have a band-aid at 1st line left-wing. This will no doubt increase pressure on Dean Lombardi to make a trade.
From rumors, the word is that teams want Schenn but Lombardi won’t give him up. I’m with Lombardi 100% of the way on that one. Brayden Schenn is an incredibly valuable asset and while his value is at an all time high due to his lights-out WJC performance, he is more valuable than any return Lombardi can realistically get right now, especially at the deadline.
The elements have combined to create a perfect storm for Lombardi. Teams know he has pressure coming from the media who have criticized his calculated approach to trades. Teams know that Kings fans are antsy about getting a scoring winger. Now, teams know that the pressure is higher for Lombardi since Sturm got plucked up by the Washington Capitals.
The question is, does Lombardi pull the trigger?
I think so, but I don’t think it will be at the cost of significant roster players, Schenn, Loktionov, or other serious prospects. Obviously that lowers the value of the player the Kings get in return, however, the Kings have a lot of enticing prospects, their picks of course, and maybe 1 or 2 roster players that Lombardi could stomach parting with.
But with the team clicking like it is, how much do you want to mess with the locker room? At this point, does it help or hurt to make these kinds of changes? What kind of player is available for the assets Lombardi is willing to trade?
With the trade deadline fast approaching, we’re soon to find out.
About the Author
Written by Eric Cooney
Eric Cooney was born in Pennsylvania, grew up in North Carolina, and lives in Los Angeles, CA. He shares his thoughts on the NHL as one man who is a northerner, southerner, east coaster, and west coaster. Follow him on Twitter @EricCooney