THIS DATE IN HISTORY: June 11
2012: Forty-five years after entering the NHL, the Los Angeles Kings finally reign as Stanley Cup champions.
The Kings, part of the NHL's first expansion in 1967, defeat the New Jersey Devils 6-1 in Game 6 of the Final at Staples Center to cap one of the most dominant championship runs in League history. They become the first No. 8 seed to win the Cup, the first team to defeat the top three teams in its conference, and the first team, regardless of seeding, to win the first three games in each of its four playoff series.
"They've been waiting longer than I have, this city," says Kings captain Dustin Brown, who receives the Cup from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. "You dream of winning the Cup, and you know what, I'm glad I was the first King to ever lift it."
The Kings blow the game open in the first period by scoring three times during a five-minute power play after New Jersey's Steve Bernier is assessed a major penalty for boarding and a game misconduct for a hit on Los Angeles defenseman Rob Scuderi.
Goalie Jonathan Quick wins the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP after going 16-4 with a 1.41 goals-against average and .946 save percentage.
1969: The Chicago Black Hawks (then two words) hit the jackpot at the NHL Intraleague Draft when they claim rookie goalie Tony Esposito from the Montreal Canadiens. For their $25,000, the Blackhawks get a goalie who wins the Calder and Vezina trophies in his first NHL season and wins 418 games for Chicago, earning induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Video: Tony Esposito won Vezina, Calder in 1969-70
1974: The NHL becomes an 18-team league when the Washington Capitals and Kansas City Scouts officially are granted franchises. Each will begin play in the 1974-75 season.
1994: The Vancouver Canucks even the Stanley Cup Final at three wins apiece by defeating the New York Rangers 4-1 at Pacific Coliseum in Game 6. Jeff Brown and Geoff Courtnall each score twice for the Canucks, who win a home game in the Final for the first time in their history.
1995: The Detroit Red Wings advance to the Cup Final for the first time since 1966 when Vyacheslav Kozlov scores at 2:25 of the second overtime for a 2-1 win against the Blackhawks in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final at Joe Louis Arena. Kozlov's eighth goal of the playoffs comes on Detroit's 47th shot against goalie Ed Belfour.
On the same day, Claude Lemieux scores with 45 seconds left in the third period to give the New Jersey Devils a 3-2 win against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final at the Spectrum. The Devils take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-7 series and set an NHL record with their eighth road win in one playoff year.
1998: Kris Draper scores at 15:24 of overtime to give the Red Wings a 5-4 win against the Capitals in Game 2 of the Cup Final at Joe Louis Arena. The Red Wings trail 4-2 with less than 12 minutes remaining in the third period but force overtime on goals by Martin Lapointe and Doug Brown. It's the sixth straight win in the Final for the Red Wings.
2014: Henrik Lundqvist makes 40 saves to help the New York Rangers avoid being swept in the Final with a 2-1 victory against the Kings in Game 4 at Madison Square Garden. Lundqvist stops the final 26 shots he faces after Brown scores at 8:46 of the second period. Benoit Pouliot and Martin St. Louis score for the Rangers, who send the series back to Los Angeles despite being outshot 41-19.
2017: The Pittsburgh Penguins become the first team to repeat as Stanley Cup champion since the Red Wings in 1998 when they defeat the Nashville Predators 2-0 in Game 6 of the Final at Bridgestone Arena. The game is scoreless until Penguins forward Patric Hornqvist beats Predators goalie Pekka Rinne with 1:35 remaining in the third period. Carl Hagelin's empty-net goal with 14 seconds remaining is icing on the cake for the Penguins, who get a 27-save performance from goalie Matt Murray. Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is named winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy for the second straight season.
Video: Cup Final, Gm6: Penguins @ Predators