Julien: Sturm getting better

Bruins head coach Claude Julien told the media Tuesday that Bruins forward Marco Sturm -- out since Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals last spring -- is getting closer to a return to game action.

"He started taking a little bit of contact yesterday, so I think he's getting better and he's getting really close," Julien said.

Sturm had major reconstructive knee surgery -- his second in two years -- after tearing his MCL and ACL last May. But while Sturm hasn't played yet this season, Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli appeared to have pulled off a trade last Thursday that would've sent the German winger to the Kings in exchange for a conditional fourth-round pick. The deal reportedly fell through at the last minute due to the Kings being wary of when Sturm would be ready for game action. But according to sources from both teams, there is still a chance the trade could eventually happen allowing the Bruins to clear more cap space.