Sports Opinion & Analysis

Stanley Cup Prediction: L.A. Story

In NHL on May 30, 2012 at 10:11 am

Call it West Coast bias, or simply call it playing the safe bet, but I don’t see the New Jersey Devils doing anything to beat the LA Kings, once they start their Stanley Cup Final series tonight in New Jersey. I’m quick to mention New Jersey, because the Kings are 8-and-0 on the road these playoffs. They’ve so far beaten Vancouver, St. Louis and Phoenix, all on hostile ice. Not only that, but after barely even making the playoffs, the Kings have only lost two games the entire postseason.

Even fans in L.A. wouldn’t be able to identify a single Kings player, so why bother with their picture?

The team from Los Angeles just looks like the faster, better and scarier team.

The Kings penalty killing has been downright murderous so far. At times, it seems as if they like to score more with one man down than otherwise. Their defense has looked impenetrable, and their goaltender, Jonathan Quick, has looked more like a human wall than a hockey player. Add in the offensive play of RW Dustin Brown, (seven goals, 16 points in the playoffs) and LW Dwight King (five goals in the playoffs) and you have a hard hitting, fast scoring favorite that’s not just going to be tough for New Jersey to beat once, maybe twice, but impossible four times.

That’s not to discredit anything the Devils have done this season, or the playoffs. They’ve played tough and managed to ruin the NHL’s marketing dream of an LA/NY series. The NHL still got it, sort of, only in its less sexy New Jersey form.

Either way, I hope the LAPD has their riot gear ready. While hockey is arguably the least cared about sport in Los Angeles, I know its residents like any excuse for an old timey, down-home riot.

Kings in six.

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