The Los Angeles Kings have blown through the Stanley Cup Playoffs, needing just two more games than the minimum necessary to advance to the Stanley Cup Final. By any standard, that's pretty darn impressive.
In mowing down the top three seeds in the West, Darryl Sutter's hearty gang took a similar path. It opened each series with a pair of road victories to take a 2-0 lead. In all three instances, the guys in silver and black never looked back.
With a perfect 8-0 road record, the Kings will try to read from the same script in Newark.
That's why I feel Game 1 is absolutely vital for the Devils.
If Pete Deboer's team is going to knock the Kings off message, they'll need to do it in the opening game. The Devils have to bring a little adversity into the Kings' nearly perfect spring. They need to make them a little uncomfortable. They need to make them chase a series for a change.