The Los Angeles Kings are hanging tough in the playoff race over in the Western Conference, and they might need some help from the trade market to get the franchise to make its first playoff appearance in years. The Kings are far from a perfect unit this season, but it has done enough to place third at the moment in the Pacific Division standings with 61 points. According to King general manager Rob Blake (via Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic), Los Angeles is of the mindset that it’s not just talent they’re going to look for ahead of the NHL Trade Deadline — but more about fit in the system being applied on the Kings by head coach Todd McLellan.
“We have a long ways to go, believe me, but I do think we’re at that stage now approaching this deadline that we need players we can trust in this lineup,” Blake continued. “And I’ve seen what that does for Todd. Because he can build a system and a style of play when you fit those players in, now you start to create something that’s much more competitive.”
The Kings are rumored to be looking for help in the blueline, especially since they have both Alexander Edler and Sean Walker are on the long-term injured reserve. Los Angeles is rumored to be among the likely to be a landing spot of Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun via a trade.
Los Angeles hasn’t been part of the Stanley Cup Playoffs since 2018, as the team has gone on a rebuilding phase with the hopes of reviving their glory days in the near future. That future might just depend on what they do at the trade deadline in March.