May 31, 2013 |
CHICAGO -- The Stanley Cup playoffs are getting down to serious business with the Kings scheduled to practice in Chicago later Friday as they prepare for the Western Conference finals against the Blackhawks. This postseason marks only the second time in NHL history that the four remaining teams are also the last four Cup winners. That's good news for a league battling to erase memories of a lockout-shortened season, but Kings Coach Darryl Sutter believes all the focus and accolades belong elsewhere.
May 11, 2013 |
Making history has become routine for the Kings. Last spring they became the first No. 8 seed to win the Stanley Cup, upsetting the 1-2-3 teams in the West before defeating the New Jersey Devils in the final. After opening their title defense by dismissing the fourth-seeded St. Louis Blues, the Kings appear to have picked up where they left off. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the fifth-seeded Kings are the first NHL team to win five consecutive playoff series despite playing Game 1 on the road in each series.
April 29, 2013 |
Wasn't it just yesterday that the Kings were hoisting the Stanley Cup? Time flies when you follow a tedious, spirit-sapping lockout with a 48-game season that was crammed into 100 calendar days. The Kings will try to become the first team to win back-to-back titles since the Detroit Red Wings in 1997 and 1998, but, unlike last season, they won't take anyone by surprise. The Chicago Blackhawks, who had to break up their 2010 Cup team almost immediately because of salary-cap concerns, have rebuilt their reserves of talent and character and are the favorites.
April 28, 2013 |
This is the sixth time they have met in the playoffs. The two times the Ducks defeated Detroit in the playoffs (2003 and 2007) were also the two times they reached the Stanley Cup Final, winning in 2007. Anaheim was 1-2 against the Red Wings in this shortened season, losing both games at home, getting outscored 7-2. The Ducks' win at Detroit on Feb. 15 was a breakthrough moment of sorts, marking their first win at Joe Louis Arena in five years. Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard has a career record of 9-3-1 against the Ducks.
April 27, 2013 |
Detroit, again. If it is the Stanley Cup playoffs and the Ducks have qualified, well then, it almost seems automatic that they will face the Detroit Red Wings. They will meet in the opening round of the playoffs with the first game possibly on Tuesday at Honda Center in Anaheim. This is the sixth time they've met in the playoffs. The two times the Ducks defeated Detroit in the playoffs (2003 and 2007) were also the two times they reached the Stanley Cup Final, winning in 2007.
April 26, 2013 |
Corey Perry was a fresh-faced second-year player and just 21 when the Ducks started their playoff run to a Stanley Cup championship in 2007. Now, the 2010-11 Hart Trophy winner is a little more than a month removed from signing an eight-year, $69-million extension, and the attention on him is far more glaring with the Stanley Cup playoffs just days away. "Starting from a young age and maturing as a player, you're taught to put the team on your back," Perry said after practice Friday at Honda Center.