He's the architect behind the Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.
In large part, the team looks the way it does because of the moves made by Dean Lombardi. In a revealing interview with Fred Roggin, Lombardi talks about the things that might have prevented him from ever coming to the Kings.
Growing up in an Italian family, Lombardi went to Tulane Law School and became an attorney, a profession that, in his grandmother's eyes, put him just a step below the Pope. Having played hockey in college, an interview at a law office shifted Lombardi's focus back to the sport he always loved.
Years later, he'd be pursued by the Kings to become their general manager, a title he now holds. Yet it was another pursuer, another team, that caught his eye from the start. In fact, Lombardi readily admits that Los Angeles wasn't his first choice. The reasons for his eventual change of heart will surprise many Kings fans.
He has made many personnel moves over his seven seasons with the Kings, but one of his toughest was the decision to change coaches midway through what became the team's Stanley Cup season. A gutty decision to choose a coach that couldn't join the team for two weeks turned out to be one of his best and boldest moves.
Lombardi talks about all that and much much more in his candid, compelling interview with Fred Roggin for his new Sunday night show, Going Roggin, including the idea that the Kings can win more championships and in turn, capture the hearts of the city just the way the Lakers have done.