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Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Kings hope to win it in front of their fans

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 6:12 PM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – At least one Los Angeles Kings player acknowledged the obvious when it comes to Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final.

With a 3-0 series lead on the New Jersey Devils and a chance to hoist the franchise's first Stanley Cup on their home ice, Colin Fraser said what everyone is thinking. Sort of.

"We don't really care where we do it, but now that we're in the position to do it at home, yes," Fraser said. "You don't want to lose any games, right? We definitely want to do it at home. We put ourselves in a good position and we definitely want to take advantage of it."

Most of the Kings rolled out the expected guarded statements Tuesday about staying in focus and not thinking about the Stanley Cup being in the building on Wednesday. It's difficult not to believe the Kings won't close out the Devils, especially after New Jersey couldn't offer much resistance in a 4-0 loss in Game 3.

Ranford sees similarities in runs by Kings, '88 Oilers

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 5:08 PM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Kings goalie coach Bill Ranford lived through history in 1988 as the Edmonton Oilers' 21-year-old backup goalie; he just didn't know about it until Tuesday afternoon.

"You know what, until you told me I didn't even realize we did (go 16-2 in the 1988 Stanley Cup Playoffs)," Ranford told NHL.com. "I was so caught up in everything that was going on that you're just so happy to win the Stanley Cup, you don't even know. I did not realize it. That tells you it's about one thing, and that's winning the Cup; it doesn't matter how many games it takes. Winning 16 is all that matters."

It took only 18 games for that '88 Oilers team to win the Cup. They are still the only team in the 25 years since the NHL established the best-of-seven format in all four rounds to need so few games to do it.

Four ways for Devils to prolong season in Game 4

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 3:09 PM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer


LOS ANGELES -- Following the Devils' Game 3 loss Monday night, goaltender Martin Brodeur was asked about what it will take to overcome a 3-0 series deficit in the Stanley Cup Final.

The 40-year-old veteran who has heard the question before gave an answer that was somewhat cliché, yet totally honest.

"I think every team that's down 3-0 will have the same speech," Brodeur said. "It's not new. We're looking at this as one game at a time, like everybody will tell you in the last 20 years or so.

Amazing depth has Kings on brink of first Stanley Cup

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 1:16 AM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

LOS ANGELES -- The only number that matters to the Los Angeles Kings is 16. They're one win away from it.

The number that has helped them get closer to win No. 16 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs than ever before is 17. That's how many Kings skaters have scored a goal in the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

You want balance? There it is for you wrapped neatly on one seemingly indestructible and impossibly impressive team that can win the Stanley Cup and finish with a 16-2 postseason record with another 60 dynamite minutes Wednesday night at Staples Center in Game 4 (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"I think it's just the perfect proof of our team play and our depth," said Kings defenseman Rob Scuderi, ironically the lone regular who doesn't have a goal.

Alec Martinez beefed the Kings balanced scoring up to 17 players with his game-opening goal 5:40 into the second period of Game 3 Monday. It's all they needed before they feasted on the New Jersey Devils for a 4-0 victory in front of an electric and record-breaking crowd of 18,674 at Staples Center. Jonathan Quick made 22 saves for his third shutout of the playoffs, and the latest round of domination by these Kings.

Lack of offense dooms Devils again

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 1:12 AM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

LOS ANGELES -- Every team enters the season with one goal -- win the Stanley Cup. The New Jersey Devils are finding it nearly impossible to achieve that goal when they only have two in three games.

Jonathan Quick made 22 saves -- very few of a difficult nature -- as the Kings rolled to a 4-0 victory in Game 3 of the series to take a commanding 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series. Through 201 minutes, 55 seconds, the Devils have two goals on 72 shots, with one bouncing into the net off Kings defenseman Slava Voynov in Game 1 after Quick made the initial save.

"I think that's pretty obvious," Devils coach Peter DeBoer said. "Of course, we need more goals."

Martinez is latest unexpected hero for the Kings

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 12:44 AM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

LOS ANGELES -- At the morning skate on Monday, Alec Martinez talked to one lone reporter at his locker stall while teammates conducted large media scrums near him.

It's nothing out of the ordinary.

Alec Martinez
Defense - LAK
GOALS: 1 | ASST: 2 | PTS: 3
SOG: 22 | +/-: 4
There is no demand for Martinez, easily the most anonymous player in the Los Angeles Kings' lineup. Yet in a season defined by all-around contributions, it was appropriate that Martinez's first career playoff goal counted as the game-winner in their 4-0 victory against the New Jersey Devils in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final. It gave L.A. a 3-0 series lead, and the Kings can win their first Stanley Cup by taking Game 4 on Wednesday (8 p.m., NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

A pinching Martinez followed Dwight King's second, third and fourth whacks and pushed the puck in across the goal line at 5:40 of the second period for a 1-0 lead. Somewhere in the group hug amid raised arms was a bright smile.

Devils: Martinez goal turned tide of Game 3

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 12:27 AM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

LOS ANGELES -- Martin Brodeur didn't lose his cool Monday night after Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final the way he did on the ice after the controversial goal by Alec Martinez opened the scoring at Staples Center, but his message was equally forceful.

Martin Brodeur
Goalie - NJD
RECORD: 12-8-3
GAA: 2.09 | SVP: 0.919
Brodeur felt he had the puck covered long enough to get a whistle, but instead Dwight King jammed it free for what turned out to be the winning goal by Martinez in a 4-0 victory that gave Los Angeles a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.

"I had the puck," Brodeur said. "I covered it with my stick and the guy just pushed me. The ref was in a tough spot to make the call. I think he was in the wrong position, so it's tough for him to make the call. I think they maybe should've asked the other referee to see what they saw before making the call, but it is what it is, what are you going to do?"

Gretzky excited by Kings' playoff run

Monday, 06.04.2012 / 9:30 PM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Arguably the greatest to ever play the game, Wayne Gretzky was a member of some pretty good teams over the course of 20 seasons in the National Hockey League.

But the four-time Stanley Cup winner (Edmonton, 1984, '85, '87, '88) admitted that he's stunned by the roll the Los Angeles Kings are on. L.A. is 14-2 this postseason and held a 2-0 series lead on the New Jersey Devils entering Monday's Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final at Staples Center.

"I was thinking about the 70s teams with Guy Lafleur and [Larry] Robinson, the '80 teams with [Mike] Bossy, [Bryan] Trottier, [Denis] Potvin, [Billy] Smith, of course our teams in the '80s and, of course, Mario's [Lemieux] teams in Pittsburgh were tremendous teams," Gretzky said on NHL Live Monday afternoon. "Those teams, you kind of expected them at some point to sort of roll through. But even the Islanders at some point had a seven-game series or won a game in overtime in Game 5 of a deciding series.

"This team, right now, I've never seen anything like it. An eighth-place team, to get on a roll that they're on -- they're definitely right now the best team in the playoffs. They've proven that in the West. They've played two games where they win on the road in the Finals in overtime. They have everything going right now. I honestly have not seen anything like this. But this has been great for the game of hockey and it's great for California of course here in L.A."

Reports: Gagne to return to Kings lineup

Monday, 06.04.2012 / 2:26 PM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

LOS ANGELES -- Simon Gagne could make a surprise return for the Los Angeles Kings in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final on Monday (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

Multiple outlets reported that Gagne will be in the lineup when the Kings play the New Jersey Devils at Staples Center. It would be Gagne’s first game since he suffered a concussion on Dec. 26 against the Phoenix Coyotes.

Darren Dreger of TSN reported on Twitter that Gagne would play, likely in place of Brad Richardson, in a surprising development. Richardson is believed to be healthy and the Kings also have Kyle Clifford available, but L.A. could be looking for a scoring boost from Gagne, a two-time 40-goal scorer.

The Kings' power play is 6-for-77 in the playoffs and hasn't scored in five games.

Weight: Devils can still shift pressure onto Kings

Monday, 06.04.2012 / 10:05 AM / Devils vs Kings - 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Doug Weight - Special to NHL.com

LOS ANGELES -- Every team that loses tries to take some positives and run with them. It's a smart thing to do. You need to grab a hold of something.

New Jersey is going to say the Stanley Cup Final shifting to L.A. is a good change of scenery.

Yes the Kings have a vibe going on the road that continued in Newark. It's almost a crazy, freakish thing that they're doing right now. But the Devils can now get out of their place and circle Game 3 and realize all they have to do is just go win a hockey game against a team that, while it is playing well, is still filled with humans that aren't unbeatable.

They're down two games, but it's not four yet. There is no parade tomorrow. Ideally you don't want to lose your two home games, but go win a game, that's it. One great effort can broaden your chest, slowly move momentum to you and also put some pressure on the Kings.

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