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Round 2
Round 3
Stanley Cup Final

Kings look to keep going after taking opener

Friday, 06.01.2012 / 12:06 PM / Ice Vision - Presented by Turtle Wax

NHL.com

For the second time in as many Stanley Cup Final appearances, the Los Angeles Kings got off on the right foot by edging the New Jersey Devils 2-1 on Wednesday in Game 1 at Prudential Center.

When the teams hit the ice again Saturday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS), the Kings will look to achieve what the 1993 team never could, and close to within two wins of the franchise's first championship.

They'll also be looking to extend their perfect mark away from Staples Center to 10-0 and tie an NHL record for most road wins in a single postseason.

The Devils, meanwhile, will be trying to avoid losing two in a row for only the second time this playoff year.

Here are five things to keep in mind as we head toward the puck drop in Game 2:

1. Since the NHL introduced the best-of-seven format for the Final in 1939, teams winning Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final have gone on to win 76.4 percent of the time (55 of 72). That hasn't been the case in two of the past three years, though, as the 2009 Penguins and 2011 Bruins actually lost the first two games in the Final before going on to seven-game series wins. Pittsburgh and Boston started out on the road, however, while New Jersey is playing at home.

Anze Kopitar
Anze Kopitar
Center - LAK
GOALS: 7 | ASST: 9 | PTS: 16
SOG: 52 | +/-: 14
2. Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Quick hasn't posted a save percentage lower than .900 in a game this postseason. The maximum number of goals he's allowed in a game has been three -- most recently in a Game 5 overtime win to close out Phoenix in the Western Conference Finals (on 41 shots), and previously in a Game 4 loss to Vancouver in the first round (on 30 shots). In other words, if the Devils want to become the third team to accomplish the three-goal feat against Quick, they'll probably need more than the 17 shots they registered in the series opener.

3. In order to win a Cup, you need offense from unlikely sources. Both players who scored in regulation during Game 1 recorded their first goal of this year's playoffs: Kings forward Colin Fraser had played just five postseason games in his career with Chicago prior to this spring, without scoring, while Devils defenseman Anton Volchenkov had three goals in 61 career playoff games for Ottawa.

4. Anze Kopitar's overtime goal Wednesday ended the first Game 1 of a Stanley Cup Final to go past regulation in 10 years. Ron Francis scored 58 seconds into the extra period to give Carolina a 3-2 victory in Detroit to start the 2002 Final, which the Red Wings won by taking the next four in a row.

5. The Devils faced series deficits of 2-1 and 3-2 against the Panthers, 1-0 against the Flyers and 1-0 and 2-1 against the Rangers. In all five instances, they won the next time out to avoid going down two games in the series -- or, in the case of Game 6 against Florida, to stave off elimination.

I've been getting frustrated lately, and the only thing keeping me sane was the team winning and other people stepping up and scoring. Then you just kind of let it go and realize you can end the series with one shot, that frustration goes away for a brief moment, and that's what happened.

— Montreal forward Max Pacioretty after scoring the series winner in Game 4 -- his first career playoff goal -- to eliminate the Lightning and send the Canadiens into the second round