We finally got to see the Kings’ new left wing, Marco Sturm..for all of 16 shifts, and 11:42 minutes. First impressions? He has a nice smile, between periods that is…I kid Marco. Seriously, I liked what I saw. No Surly, that doesn’t mean I am sold on the trade.
He has a nice first step and his mid range speed is right there with Trevor Lewis. That is impressive because that mid range is what the Kings are missing at the top left wing spot. L.A. has two players in the top six with similar (though not equal) jets and they are both right wings – Brown and Williams. That is a big reason Brownie was moved to play left wing and Williams is so effective with Kopitar as his center. If Sturm can channel that impressive stride and acceleration to the outside-in on rushes, lateral and inside with the puck (especially the powerplay) and on the back check, he can do some serious damage on both ends of the ice. Tonight, he caught the Avalanche defense off guard with that speed on two separate plays.
I am sure Terry Murray was pleased with Marco’s overall defensive play. He had a couple of errand passes but our coach is probably not looking at isolated incidents right now and more of a general theme to Sturm’s game.
I don’t see Marco moving up to the first line too soon. Though predicting any line combinations is a true act of futility, I will make an educated guess that it will take at least five to seven games before Terry puts him there…that assumes of course that Marco doesn’t start lighting up the scoreboard. If he does, then I will gladly eat a small plate of crow that Surly will no doubt cook up with Serrano peppers and a pinch of I told you so.
GO KINGS BABY!