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Bob Fallen named USHL commissioner/president

Monday, 06.02.2014 / 12:00 PM / News

Bob Fallen, former Reebok-CCM Hockey marketer and businessman, has been appointed league president and commissioner of the United States Hockey League, it was announced Monday.

Fallen, who is the third USHL commissioner in the past 20 years, officially assumed his role Sunday.

"I am thrilled with the opportunity to lead the finest junior hockey league in the world," Fallen said in a statement. "The foundation built by my predecessors, league owners and the stakeholders throughout the hockey industry have made the USHL an important step along the developmental path for players, coaches and officials. I look forward to working with our staff, aligned partners and the international hockey community at large to build upon our success."


Rangers sign two to entry-level contracts

Monday, 06.02.2014 / 11:00 AM / News

The New York Rangers on Monday agreed to terms with goaltender Mackenzie Skapski and defenseman Calle Andersson on entry-level contracts. Terms were not disclosed.

Skapski, 19, appeared in 53 games with the Kootenay Ice of the Western Hockey League this season, posting a 28-20-4 record along with a career-best 2.70 goals-against average and .916 save percentage. Skapski had a career-high 10-game winning streak from Jan. 12-Feb. 11, with a 1.80 GAA and .940 save percentage over the span.

Skapski, a sixth-round pick (No. 170) in the 2013 NHL Draft, is 74-52-7 in 141 career WHL games with a 2.81 GAA, .909 save percentage and eight shutouts. He also has a 4-8 record in 15 career playoff appearances with Kootenay.


Martinez shows just how deep these Kings are

Corey Masisak - Staff Writer

CHICAGO -- This run in the Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Los Angeles Kings has been defined by words like resiliency and character, but also depth and talent.

The Kings advanced past the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks with a Game 7, 5-4 overtime win Sunday night at United Center, and the depth was on display in the extra session.


Rangers' speed to test Kings' depth, toughness

Monday, 06.02.2014 / 2:45 AM / Kings vs Rangers - 2014 Stanley Cup Final

The New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings may need a little time to feel each other out when they meet in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final.

Not only have the Rangers and Kings not played each other in more than six months, they haven't met in the Stanley Cup Playoffs since New York's 3-1 series victory in the best-of-5 first round in 1981. Their only other playoff meeting was in 1979, when the Rangers swept a best-of-3 preliminary-round series.

The Rangers and Kings concluded their two-game season series before Thanksgiving, with each team winning in the other's building. The Rangers came to Staples Center for their second game of the season and left with a 3-1 victory that featured a 160-foot shorthanded goal by New York defenseman Ryan McDonagh in the third period on a clearing attempt that bounced past the pad of Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick.

The Kings got a measure of revenge Nov. 17, winning 1-0 at Madison Square Garden. Since-traded backup goaltender Ben Scrivens outplayed New York's Henrik Lundqvist by stopping all 37 shots he faced, making rookie Tyler Toffoli's second-period goal stand up for the win.


First-period rally sparks resilient Kings in Game 7

Monday, 06.02.2014 / 1:39 AM / Winning Ingredients

Corey Masisak - Staff Writer

CHICAGO -- So often before a Game 7 players from the two combatants will stress the importance of the first goal, and the all-time numbers in NHL history back up that theory.

This Los Angeles Kings group has defied convention on so many occasions during the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs that rallying for a 5-4 overtime victory after yielding not only the first but the second goal in Game 7 of the Western Conference Final against the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks was a fitting conclusion.

"Obviously we're looking around after being down 2-0, saying this wasn't it for us, it wasn't going to end this way," Kings forward Justin Williams said. "Heck, we've battled back so many times this year, so many times so far in these playoffs. We said, Why not again [Sunday]?"


Blackhawks give up too many leads, lose series

Brian Hedger - Correspondent

CHICAGO -- When they look back at the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs with a critical eye, the Chicago Blackhawks are going to have an extra sting added to the end of their season.

Aside from finishing one shot away from advancing to the Stanley Cup Final a second straight year, losing 5-4 in overtime of Game 7 to the Los Angeles Kings at United Center on Sunday night, the Blackhawks' inability to hold leads caught up to them.

The defending Stanley Cup champions couldn't shake a playoffs-long trend of coughing up leads in Game 7 against the Kings, frittering away leads of 2-0 and 3-2 in the first period and 4-3 in the third. For the series, The Blackhawks saw nine leads melt away thanks to the persistence of the Kings and some defensive lapses and, at times, Corey Crawford's goaltending.


Kings show mettle in Game 7 win vs. Blackhawks

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

CHICAGO -- The San Jose Sharks thought they had the Los Angeles Kings down and out. The Anaheim Ducks thought the same thing. On Sunday, the Chicago Blackhawks became the latest team to make the mistake of pronouncing the Kings dead.

In a memorable Game 7 of the Western Conference Final, the Blackhawks took a two-goal lead in the first nine minutes. To most everyone, it looked like the Kings had finally run out of gas after rallying from a 3-0 series deficit against the favored Sharks and from a 3-2 hole against the top-seeded Ducks.

But this Kings team is like no other the NHL has seen.

"We never thought we weren't going to do it," Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said. "Two of their goals were pretty lucky, one from behind the goalie and the chip shot or whatever that was.

"We weren't going to let those kind of goals defeat us. We knew that we were going to get them back, get some dirty goals from crashing the net. That's basically how we won the game; we never gave up."


2014 Stanley Cup Final schedule

Sunday, 06.01.2014 / 11:45 PM / Kings vs Rangers - 2014 Stanley Cup Final

NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League today announced further schedule information, including starting times and television information, for the 2014 Stanley Cup Final, which begins Wednesday, June 4.

Based on their superior regular-season point total, the Western Conference Champion Los Angeles Kings will host Games One and Two of the best-of-seven Final, as well as Games Five and Seven, if necessary.

Games Three and Four, as well as Game Six, if necessary, will be hosted by the Eastern Conference Champion New York Rangers.

Media Day in advance of the 2014 Stanley Cup Final will be Tuesday, June 3, at STAPLES Center. Interview opportunities will be available with the general manager, head coach and entire roster of each of the clubs participating in the Stanley Cup Final. A full schedule of events for Media Day will be released on Monday.


Kings advance to face Rangers in Stanley Cup Final

Sunday, 06.01.2014 / 11:00 PM / Kings vs Rangers - 2014 Stanley Cup Final

John Kreiser - Columnist

The New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings may need a little time to feel each other out when they meet in the 2014 Stanley Cup Final.

Not only have the Rangers and Kings not played each other in more than six months, they haven't met in the Stanley Cup Playoffs since New York's 3-1 series victory in the best-of-5 first round in 1981. Their only other playoff meeting was in 1979, when the Rangers swept a best-of-3 preliminary-round series.


Former Devils owner Katz dies in plane crash

Sunday, 06.01.2014 / 5:41 PM / News

Lewis Katz, a former co-owner of the New Jersey Devils, died in a plane crash at Hanscom Field, approximately 20 miles northwest of Boston. He was 72.

Katz was among seven fatalities when a Gulfstream corporate jet, owned by Katz, ran off the end of a runway, plunged down an embankment and erupted in flames during a takeoff attempt Saturday night at approximately 9:40 p.m., according to the Associated Press. There were no survivors.

"The National Hockey League family is stunned and deeply saddened by the loss of former New Jersey Devils owner Lewis Katz," NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said in a statement. "While he was a person of tremendous influence in a variety of businesses, including sports, Lewis was, pure and simple, a great guy who highly prioritized his family and his friends. We send heartfelt condolences to them, to the many organizations that benefited from his philanthropy and to all who were affected by this tragic accident."

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I just wanted to do something to take my mind off the shot and let me relax a little bit. It seemed like the fans liked it. I'm glad I was able to score.

— Oilers forward Taylor Hall on lifting his arms to fire up the crowd before his penalty shot
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