Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Stanley Cup Finals 2012 -- Los Angeles vs New Jersey

A moment if you will for Gary Bettman, his dream match up of a New York - Los Angeles media spectacular dashed as quick as a John Tortorella rant, though perhaps Mr. Bettmans dream is forgotten quicker, than those legendary Tortorella rants we would think.

Regardless, what could have been will not be, leaving a few NHL bigwigs more than a little disappointed in their fate, though for a dissenting opinion on that the loquacious Pete DeBoer please.

Not quite Patton at the Bulge and NUTS, but you get the drift..

The long skate to the NHL Stanley Cup Finals is almost complete, the Devils and the Kings the two teams left on the ice, one team relatively well rested, the other having taken a little bit longer to make the journey to the finals.

The Kings made quick work of their competition, first the Canucks, then the Blues and most recently the Coyotes, a total of fourteen games til their date with Stanley.

The Devils on the other hand went eighteen games before they could move on to the finals, all three of their series a much larger challenge than what the Kings appeared to have to suffer, so if nothing else Los Angeles should be well rested and relatively injury free heading into this final series.

From this anchor page we'll track the progress of Stanley Cup Final, the results, previews and reviews and feature items can all be found, simply by clicking on each game as they pass by on our calendars.

Before we focus on the series to come, perhaps a review of how these two teams arrived on Stanley's doorstep.

Eastern Conference

New Jersey vs Florida
New Jersey vs Philadelphia
New Jersey vs New York Rangers

Western Conference

Los Angeles vs Vancouver
Los Angeles vs St. Louis
Los Angeles vs Phoenix

Stanley Cup Playoffs 2012 Schedule and Results

Series coverage from

All Games on CBC, RDS, NBC or NBC Sportsnet

Los Angeles leads the series 3 games to 2

May 31-- Los Angeles 2  New Jersey 1 (OT) 
June 2-- Los Angeles 2 at New Jersey 1 (OT) 
June 4-- New Jersey 0 at Los Angeles 4
June 6-- New Jersey 3 at Los Angeles 1 
June 9-- Los Angeles 1 at New Jersey 2
June 11-- New Jersey at Los Angeles 8 PM ET, 5 PT, CBC, NBC Sportsnet
June 13-- Los Angeles at New Jersey 8 PM ET, 5 PT, CBC, NBC Sportsnet (if required)

Stanley Cup Final Game One-- Los Angeles at New Jersey -- May 30, 2012

Once again, hockey prognosticators are most likely scratching their heads and going, how did these two teams get here?

At the start of the playoffs, both the Kings and the Devils did not appear to be heading for Stanley Cup destiny, both having struggled through most of the regular season, but to their credit caught fire heading into the final weeks of the regular campaign.

Securing playoff spots, the two teams found their placements and made the best of them, the Kings making quick work of their Western Conference challengers, while the Devils had  a harder time of things climbing through the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Both however are full value for their appearance in this years finale to the NHL Season.

The Kings proved quite dominant over their Western rivals, while the Devils, a never say die kind of team  never seemed to panic when things perhaps didn't go as they had hoped.

It may not be the dream New York / LA media spectacular that Gary Bettman may have wanted, but sometimes the best dreams don't always come true. Still, as far as a hockey series goes, this one may yet surprise more than a few observers.

Game One-- Los Angeles 2 at New Jersey 1 (OT) 

Los Angeles leads the series 1 game to 0 

Previews and Reviews


LA Times-- Anze Kopitar in right place at the right time for Kings
LA Times-- Kings following their marching orders to another magical playoff victory
LA Times-- Anze Kopitar's goal lifts Kings, 2-1, in overtime
LA Times--  Kings are soaking in the atmosphere of a Stanley Cup final
LA Daily News-- LA Kings win Game 1 in overtime...
LA Daily News-- LA Kings' goal within reach, thanks to Anze Kopitar
LA Daily News-- Stanley Cup captains are a real American story
Newark Star Ledger-- Ryan Carter says jitters, carelessness costly in loss to Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Has your perception of series changed after Game 1
Newark Star Ledger-- We've bounced back before, we'll do it again
Newark Star Ledger-- Stanley Cup finals Game 1 to Kings thanks to Anze Kopitar's...
Newark Star Ledger-- As Kings' road dominance continues, puck bounces their way
Newark Star Ledger-- What concerns you most after Game 1 loss?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils show nerves vs LA Kings ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils dance with Kings in Stanley Cup Finals gives Newark a spotlight
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils face much tougher road after losing Game 1 to Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils need to find a solution for Kings goalie Jonathon Quick 
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils offense sputters as Zach Parise, Ilya Kovalchuk struggle
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Martin Brodeur says nerve played a part in Game 1 loss
Newark Star Ledger-- The Devils were at their worst, and still had a chance to win it
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils fall to Kings, 2-1, in crucial series opener
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Jeff Vanderbeek close to refinancing team's debt, commissioner says
New York Post-- Devils lose to Kings in overtime of Stanley Cup opener
New York Post-- Kings' Kopitar reaches into memory bank to beat Devils goalie
New York Post-- Power Plays
New York Daily News-- NJ Devils goalie Martin Brodeur comes up empty...
New York Daily News-- LA Kings take Game 1 of Stanley Cup Finals...
New York Daily News-- LA Kings' Anze Kopitar learns from shootout move...
USA Today--  Devils need more shots to find holes in Quick
USA Today-- NBC Stanley Cup opener: TV Box office down
USA Today-- Devils lament missed opportunity in Stanley Cup
USA Today-- Kings steal Game 1 on road as Kopitar beats Brodeur in OT
National Post-- Kings' Anze Kopitar nets winner against Devils...
National Post-- Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur would like a do-over of Game 1 overtime
Globe and Mail-- Kings Game 1 dominance evident in the numbers
Globe and Mail-- Kopitar's winner follows a series of mistakes by Devils
Toronto Sun-- Kings making it look easy
Toronto Sun-- Kings grind out Game 1 win
Toronto Sun-- Another slow start for Kovalchuk
Toronto Sun-- Kings ultimate road warriors
Toronto Star-- Anze Kopitar fools Martin Brodeur in overtime...
Toronto Star-- Healthy Simon Gagne all set to help LA Kings
Toronto Star-- Jets coach Rex Ryan causes stir at Game 1


LA Times-- Room on bandwagon? The Los Angeles Kings will keep on truckin'
LA Times-- Kings are built for the long run
LA Times-- Kings are soaking in the atmosphere of a Stanley Cup Final
LA Times-- In Ilya Kovalchuk, Kings to face one who got away
LA Times-- This time, the Kings will keep watchful eye on sticks
LA Times-- Drew Doughty gets assist in becoming dominating defenseman for Kings
LA Times-- Longtime Kings broadcaster Bob Miller looks forward by looking back
LA Times-- Kings vs. Devils: How they match up
LA Times-- Kings fans can't forget stick incident in 1993, but there's more to the picture
LA Times-- Kings' success has always been atop Tim Leiweke's to-do list
LA Times-- Kings' Anze Kopitar makes the NHL more popular in Slovenia
LA Times-- Kings have interesting, some might say colourful history
LA Times-- As for Kings' ups and downs, he's been there
LA Times-- Mike Richards, Peter DeBoer: Old friends, opposite sides
LA Times-- Kings need to keep Ilya Kovalchuk off scoresheet
LA Times-- Kings vs. Devils: a first look
LA Times-- Los Angeles Kings fans stick it out
LA Times-- Los Angeles Kings' collective effort is difference
LA Daily News-- DeBoer, Richards bound by Kitchener ties
LA Daily News-- Kings, even paired with Devils, are a heavenly match for league
LA Daily News-- Q and A with Jeremy Roenick
LA Daily News-- Media day? Let's get it on!
LA Daily News-- Former Kings defenseman Jack Johnson: I have no rooting interest ...
LA Daily News-- Captain Courageous: Brown has Kings in Stanley Cup Final ...
LA Daily News-- Bosom Buddies: Reunion of Richards, Carter has Kings jelling ...
LA Daily News-- Penner getting the last laugh
LA Daily News-- The 19 year itch: A tale of the puck ...
LA Daily News-- Will anyone stick up for Marty McSorley?
LA Daily News-- Injured winger Gagne returns to practice with Kings
LA Daily News-- Doctor's orders for Kings in Stanley Cup final
Newark Star Ledger-- Doc Emrick to call Devils games once again...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Pete DeBoer to those who wanted Rangers in fnals ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils hold optional morning skate before Game 1 ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Make your Devils-Kings Game 1 and series predictions
Newark Star Ledger-- Montgomery High School drums up support for Devils...
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings GM Dean Lomardi took sage advice from Lou Lamoriello
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils - Kings preview
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Stanley Cup tickets a hot commodity
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils will bring 'no-name defense' into Stanley Cup Finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings' goaltender Jonathan Quick is sterling in net ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Will winning the Cup help their chances at keeping Zach Parise?
Newark Star Ledger-- Former Devils and Kings defenseman Dave Lewis intrigued ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Who needs to step up most vs. Kings?
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings might be favourite in Stanley Cup finals ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils hold last practice before start of Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Another round of playoffs and another with low expectations ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils Martin Brodeur set to play in 200th Stanley Cup playoff game
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Henrik Tallinder is cleared to play in Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Ilya Kovalchuk says there is a little extra motivation...
Newark Star Ledger-- Will home ice be a factor in Stanley Cup finals?
Newark Star Ledger-- How can they stop the Juggernaut Kings?
Newark Star Ledger-- A comparison of the Devils and Kings on and off the ice
Newark Star Ledger-- As Zach Parise goes, so go the Devils
NY Post-- Kovalchuk, Devils ready to bury Kings goalie
NY Post-- Devils primed to have their Cup runneth over
NY Post-- Q and A with Pete DeBoer
NY Post-- Gretzky prefers to stay out of Kings' spotlight
NY Post-- Devils coach knows Kings are huge test
NY Post-- Ilya giving Devils money's worth
NY Post-- Ageless Brodeur still having fun in goal for Devils
NY Post-- DeBoer's days off pay off for Devils
NY Post-- Kings have Flyers flavor
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers and style of play will not be missed...
NY Daily News-- Zach Parise leads NJ Devils into Stanley Cup finals...
NY Daily News-- LA Kings goalie Jonathon Quick, who rooted against ...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils goalie, the ageless Martin Brodeur, still has what it takes...
NY Daily News-- New Jersey Devils are the San Antonio Spurs of the NHL...
NY Daily News-- Ilya Kovalchuk selected Devils over Kings two years ago...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils are the pick to win 2012 Stanley Cup finals ...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils rookie Adam Henrique making his mark...
USA Today-- Devils' Martin Brodeur remains a force at 40
USA Today-- Get early lead to make Kings uncomfortable
USA Today-- Mike Richards, Jeff Carter get another shot at Cup
USA Today-- Sizing up the Stanley Cup Final
USA Today-- Devils' Zajac reaches Stanley Cup Final after injury scare
Globe and Mail-- Stanley Cup Final a tale of two goaltenders
Globe and Mail-- Devils' coach DeBoer calls Kings 'a three or four headed monster'
Globe and Mail-- Superstitious Sutter a slave to routine
Globe and Mail-- Bold thinking paying off for Los Angeles Kings
Globe and Mail-- Why the Devils will win
Globe and Mail-- Ed Snider says he's rooting for former Flyers Carter, Richards
Globe and Mail-- Former Flyers target regal redemption
Globe and Mail-- Line combinations: How the Devils and Kings stack up
Globe and Mail-- Marty McSorley hopes Kings straighten out curse of illegal stick
Globe and Mail-- Kings' Mitchell has eyes on prize, not the candy
Globe and Mail-- Why the Kings will win
Globe and Mail-- The Devils you know
Globe and Mail-- How the Devils were built
Globe and Mail-- Are the Los Angeles Kings the best eighth seed ever?
Globe and Mail-- Jersey's Kovalchuk comes full  circle
Globe and Mail-- Devils-Kings Stanley Cup will be a familiar affair
National Post-- Five questions for the Stanley Cup final
National Post-- Devils giving Martin Brodeur one more chance
National Post-- Travis Zajac flies under the radar after return to Devils from injury
National Post-- Aggressive changes led Devils out of own personal hell
National Post-- Devils guarantee themselves a shot at Stanley Cup
National Post-- Kings' Jonathan Quick keeps his focus on the ice
National Post-- Devils brace for Kings' onslaught
National Post-- Kings vs. Devils: Even more unlikely by the second
Toronto Star-- Martin Brodeur and Lou Lamoriello, Deviils for life
Toronto Star-- Ilya Kovalchuk signing reverberates with Kings, Devils
Toronto Star-- L. A. Kings' Darryl Sutter the ultimate players coach
Toronto Sun-- Kings, Devils rewarded for creativity
Toronto Sun-- Cup-less runs set to end
Toronto Sun-- Kings seeking long-awaited coronation
Toronto Sun-- Brodeur  not thinking retirement
Toronto Sun-- Kings' first coach remembers good and bad
Toronto Sun-- Brown failed in quest for Kovalchuk
Toronto Sun-- DeBoer, Richards linked forever
Toronto Sun-- Gretzky's great regret

Can we help you pack your bags?

The fallout from the Nashville Predators early exit from the NHL playoffs is still reverberating around Music City these days, with many of the Predator players siding with their coach and GM when it comes to their Russian situation.

A week or so back, Sergei Kotstitsyn, brother of Andrei and compatriot of Alexander Radulov, weighed in on the post season drama that enveloped the Predators, suggesting that the coach and manager had over-reacted to the curfew breaking of brother Andrei and pal Alex.

As we recall, the curfew breaking and subsequent suspension of both raised a few eyebrows in the midst of a hard fought playoff series with Phoenix, however if the Russians are thinking that the Predator players are on side, they had best think twice.

Undercurrents of disappointment in their fellow players seems to be the theme in Nashville, a team thought to be a key contender, now long since eliminated from the playoffs.  Gabriel Borque and Shea Weber both offered up their unconditional support to coach Barry Trotz and GM David Poile, suggesting disappointment and betrayal in the shenanigans  of their team mates and clearly less than impressed with their follow up comments.

As far as a close knit group as constructed for this playoff year, that ship very well may have sailed down the Cumberland River, never to dock in Nashville again.

We're not sure what the plans of the Predators might be for draft day later in June, but if my name was Kostitsyn or Radulov I would keep change of address cards very close at hand...

Toronto Sun-- Preds 'betrayed'
Sporting News-- Shea Weber's "a little bit betrayed" by Alexander Radulov
NBC Sports-- Weber felt  betrayed by Radulov
The Tennessean-- Nashville Predators' Barry Trotz isn't reason team was ousted...
The Tennessean-- Nashville Predators address team's future plans
The Tennessean-- Poile expects changes, but wants to keep core
The Tennessean-- Nashville Predators brass looks to keep nucleus together
National Post-- It's OK not to like Russian hockey players
Globe and Mail-- Preds' GM Poile left to pick up the pieces in Nashville
Globe and Mail-- Radulov, Kostitsyn and the NHL's dwindling Russian influence

Oh Johnny boy, we shall miss you... until next season!

His post game conferences became instant ads to the You Tube universe, all be it short films if ever there were.

We're not sure what the genre would be but snarky perhaps best defines the emotional detachment that the head coach of the New York Rangers had towards the assembled media throng post and pre game over these past playoff days.

And now, it's all gone, silence has descended upon Gotham City, the Rangers eliminated, the coach now mute.

His quick and at times less than informative answers  provided for much enjoyment for those far removed from the actual press conference room, where at times you could see frost forming on the camera lenses as the coach and his inquisitors square off for another session of Anger Management.

The coaches of the Kings and the Devils, while clearly hockey tacticians, don't have that Manhattan flair that Tortorella brought to our television screens, night after night.

The hockey will go on into June, four games more maybe seven, all of them without the occasional wit, sporadic wisdom, stony stares and glares of John Tortorella.

All we have are the memories, snippets of snark to hold us over until September.


. .
And for added effect, a little music to go with our snark.
.    .
National Post-- Rangers coach John Tortorella is a master motivator
National Post-- There is a method to John Tortorella's madness
National Post-- The poetic stylings of Rangers coach John Tortorella
National Post-- Rangers coach John Tortorella is a man of few words
National Post-- John Tortorella's surly shtick just puts attention on Rangers
National Post-- Rangers coach John Tortorella is mild compared to Emile Francis
National Post-- Never a dull moment with Rangers coach John Tortorella
Globe and Mail-- Rangers, Tortorella look to the heavens for inspiration
Globe and Mail-- Dealing with John Tortorella is part of the job
Globe and Mail-- New series, same old John Tortorella
Globe and Mail-- The voluble Mr. Tortorella
Ottawa Citizen-- Is Tortorella a comedic genius or pompous buffoon?
Winnipeg Free Press-- Snippy, intolerant Tortorella disrespects NHL fans
Boston Herald-- John Tortorella rips Devils
NESN-- John Tortorella wasn't always so tight lipped.. 
New York Post-- Torts looks to future following Ranger loss
New York Post-- Tortorella's tactics can't rescue Rangers
New York Post-- Devils, Rangers coaches clearly don't like each other
New York Post-- Tortorella can be as cranky as he wants as long as Blueshirts win the Cup
New York Daily News-- John Tortorella breaks silence, says he has 'regret' over ban
New York Daily News-- Torts keeps it short
Hartford Courant-- No, John Tortorella hasn't mellowed
CBS NY-- Tortorella blasts Devils for Questionable Hits, flops
NBC Sports-- DeBoer, Tortorella deflect questions about yelling match
NBC NY-- Bad Blood Comes to the Eastern Conference finals
Newark Star Ledger-- John Tortorella is intense and resolute ...
The National-- New York Rangers coach comes up short in media interaction
CBC-- Torts vs. Marceau: Who would make the better mime?
Sportnset-- Man behind the mask
Sportsnet-- The Tortorella way Rangers' Tortorella trades barbs with media
Fox Sports-- Tortorella trades barbs with media
USA Today-- Rangers coach John Tortorella not eager to open up

Sunday, May 27, 2012

It's Not 1994!!

The Ghosts of playoffs past did not revisit the New Jersey Devils, though for a bit in game six, you had to wonder if Mark Messier might have been doing his best Jack Nicholson imitation from Witches of Eastwick.

The Devils survived another spirited Ranger comeback, one which at one point seemed to suggest that a game seven was but a given, the drama and momentum destined to shift back to New York City.

But then, the Devils refocused on their goal, with a Stanley Cup final appearance glinting in the distance, the Devils turned back the Ranger attack, settling down defensively while still pushing into the Ranger end of the ice.

Three periods gave way to a fourth, an overtime frame steeped in drama, each shot could be a possible game changer, the drama playing out in just over a minute as Adam Henrique, who had left the ice in pain in the third period providing for the deliverance for the Devils.

A goal mouth scramble, with bodies crashing and Henrik Lundqvist scrambling to find the black disc ended when Henrique fished the puck out of the scrum and fired it into the gaping net, game over, series won, ghosts vanquished.


The look on Henrik Lundqvists face told you all you needed to know about the Rangers end, while the smile and yelps from Henrique proved to be the exclamation point for the Devils season thus far.

So much was heard of 1994, the much discussed guarantee from Messier, though as not to be a distraction, the one time Ranger leader was nowhere to be found in the Prudential Centre.

These Rangers had their own story to write, the swagger of a team that continually found ways to win this year when their backs were to the wall, seemingly sure that they would persevere once again, as they had with Ottawa and Washington.

Yet, those fourteen games of rounds one and two clearly had taken a toll on the Rangers in the third round, at times there were periods of play where the Blueshirts looked totally gassed, nothing left to give, but somehow they found some jump when needed most, taking back leads, leaving a bit of doubt for the Devils to consider.

The odds however, finally went in the Devils favour, it wasn't a pretty goal, it wasn't on any spectacular rush, but a goal that seems to define playoff hockey, put the puck to the net, fight for it and when you have it make your shot count.

The Devils created the opportunity, Henrique did his part and a remarkable playoff run for Lundqvist came to an end in a most painful fashion.

A new challenge arrives on Wednesday when the Devils play the Kings in the Stanley Cup final, there will be lessons to have been learned from they six games against the Rangers, but at least for the Devils the learning curve will still be on the ice, with every players goal still within sight.

Reviews of all six games from the Hudson River showdown can be found here.

Juniors have stage to themselves at Memorial Cup

The stage is set for the championship game of Canadian Major Junior A hockey and as should be the case when we celebrate the Junior game, the professionals have stepped out of the way.

And while it's most likely more related to happenstance than by design, the NHL will be silent on Sunday when the London Knights and Memorial hosts Shawinigan Cataractes take to the ice to decide which team is the best in all of Junior hockey.

The spotlight should ensure perhaps the largest audience yet for Sportsnet, which as host broadcaster for the Memorial Cup will once again provide the championship presentation, offering us many of the same bells and whistles that they use during their regular season Junior hockey broadcasts and those from their NHL affiliations.

To it's credit, Sportsnet does not shortchange the CHL when it comes to hockey coverage, it has been a very successful partnership thus far and with Sunday's championship a stand alone event now, it should provide Sportsnet and the CHL with the audience that these up and coming would be NHLers deserve.

The road to Sunday's showdown was long and twisty one for Shawinigan, gaining a berth in the Memorial Cup owing to their hosting duties, the Cataractes were eliminated from the Quebec league playoffs a month or so ago, well rested no doubt for their Memorial Cup appearance, but perhaps with a bit of rust.

An opening night loss to the Edmonton Oil Kings, probably didn't do much to reassure the home folk that success was at hand, but then the Cataractes caught fire, a victory over London kept their ambitions alive, moving them to a 1 and 1 record heading into their final game of the opening round, a nasty affair with Q league rival Saint John, one which went to the New Brunswick squad amid much controversy both on the ice and between the benches.

Shawinigan shook that off with a convincing thrashing of Edmonton in the Play in Round and then a return match with Saint John this time giving the hosts a victory over the defending Memorial Cup champs and earning a hard fought berth in Sunday's final.

London on the other hand, had the gruelling OHL playoffs to survive, night after night of intense, hard hitting hockey that surely must have taken some kind of a toll well before the team arrived in Quebec.

Yet, in two of their three first round games the Knights were the better squad on the night, earning a bye into Sunday's final, some valuable rest for the OHL representative.

Whether that proves to be more disruptive to the cause than the Shawinigan path this week remains to be seen, though for London the task is harder today than it may have been a few days ago, playing the host team in the final always puts the visitor in a hard spot to work with.

You come into the game clearly the enemy, the crowd which may have remained neutral for the most part if any of the other teams were the competition will be at full voice on Sunday, it will make for a great atmosphere to bring an end to the CHL season, the Knights hopeful of putting a damper on the week long party in Shawinigan, leaving the hosts as first in the fans hearts, but second best on the ice on this day.

You can review the Memorial Cup path from our archive page found here.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Game Six-- New York Rangers at New Jersey -- May 25, 2012

The Rangers surely must feel that destiny is starting to turn against them, a remarkable comeback in game five was rendered pointless after the Devils responded to the Ranger push to secure a 5-3 victory, taking a three game to two lead back home to Newark for a possible close out game tonight.

The Rangers who managed to make a challenge of Game 5 despite an off night for Henrik Lundqvist seemed to be on the cusp of one of those we'll talk about this for years moments, only to see the Devils regroup and return to the task at hand of moving forward in the playoffs.

New Jersey, which watched a 3 goal lead disappear, never seemed to panic when other teams might have, even with some stumbles by the legendary Martin Brodeur, the Devils, picked themselves up and marched forward,  one of those character type wins that tend to define champions.

And with it, they stand but one win away from another Stanley Cup appearance, as unlikely as that may have seemed at the start of the season, the Devils, not the Rangers would seem to have the momentum in place to bring an end to the Eastern Final and to bring on the Stanley Cup final.

New York however has been here before, twice as a mater of fact, on the verge of elimination, stumbling, struggling to make it to the finish line, each time in previous series they found the will to extend their demise, such an opportunity has arisen again.

Should make for a dandy game six, the ebb and flow of a series that at times has been stagnant then suddenly bursts into energy and fight, offering up the added drama that one of the teams could see their season end short of their goal.

The Rangers, who have looked very tired in the last few games, need to summon up whatever energy they have in reserve for sixty minutes (maybe a bit more) of effort to salvage a pretty impressive season, the Devils who seem to have peaked at just the right time, need to put away their cross river rivals tonight, a game seven in New York City would make for an amazing setting, but it comes with much risk, better to solve the Rangers now and move on.

Game Six-- New York Rangers 2 at New Jersey 3 (OT) 

NEW JERSEY WINS the series 4 games to 2

Previews and Reviews


New York Post-- Henrique, Devils deal defeat in OT, deny 1994 deja Blue
New York Post-- Captain Callahan's goal can't bail out Blueshirts
New York Post-- Torts looks to future following Rangers loss
New York Post-- Rookie scrambles Rangers
New York Post-- Rangers heartbroken after season-ending loss to Devils
New York Post-- Henrique scores big experience
New York Post-- Ageless Brodeur ready to fill Cup
New York Post-- Karma for Kovy
NY Daily News-- Season ends for NY Rangers as Adam Henrique lifts NJ Devils...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers must find more scoring punch...
NY Daily News-- Relieved Martin Brodeur closes door on '94...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils' Adam Henrique gives NY Rangers grief ...
NY Daily News-- In the end, NY Rangers coach John Tortorella and ... 
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils chasing history in Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' victory evens the score for Martin Brodeur with ghosts of 1994
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Lou Lamoriello: Rangers series tough because of 'side attraction'
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils down Rangers, 3-2, earn first trip to Stanley Cup finals since 2003
Newark Star Ledger-- A first look at the Devils-Kings Stanley Cup final matchup
Newark Star Ledger-- In a flash, the Rangers' hard work goes for naught in loss to Devils
Newark Star Ledger-- Where does Devils hero Adam Henrique go from here?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Zach Parise decides not to raise Prince of Wales trophy
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils take pleasure in beating Rangers to reach Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Martin Brodeur continues to drink from fountain of youth
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils looking forward to challenge against Kings in Stanley Cup finals
USA Today-- Rangers' Lundqvist devastated after loss
USA Today-- Devils beat Rangers 3-2 in OT, head to Final
USA Today-- Rangers season ends as another rally falls short
Globe and Mail-- Devils beat Rangers in overtime, advance to Stanley Cup final
Globe and Mail-- NHL teams that spend tend to win
Toronto Star-- New Jersey Devils reach Stanley Cup final, win Game 6 in overtime
Toronto Sun-- Devils drop Rangers in OT


New York Post-- Stakes for Rangers, Devils same as '94, but rivals seek own history
New York Post-- Rangers embracing do-or-die mentality before Game 6
New York Post-- Callahan knows he must 'C's moment for Rangers in Game 6
New York Post-- Devils 'not counting' on Rangers goalie struggling again
New York Post-- Rangers' Lundqvist needs to channel Richter's '94 effort
New York Post-- Messier answered with his words, then goals
New York Post-- Rangers fans know "Marteeee" now
New York Post-- Leetch 'laughed' when he saw Messier's guarantee
New York Post-- Behind the scenes as Leetch, Daneyko take in Devils-Rangers series
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers and coach John Tortorella steer clear of any Mark Messier...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers are plenty used to having backs agains the wall...
NY Daily News-- Martin Brodeur says today's N. J. Devils, compared to '94 squad...
NY Daily News-- '94 Rewind: Mark Messier scores three goals as NY Rangers  beat ...
NY Daily News-- From the archives: Mark Messier guarantees NY Rangers will...
NY Daily News-- John Tortorella says Rangers' mindset slipped...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils Pete DeBoer: We don't have many corrections to make...
Newark Star Ledger-- What will the Game 6 headline be?
Newark Star Ledger-- What's been the best part about the 2012 playoff run?
Newark Star Ledger-- John Tortorella is intense and resolute and it's all authentic ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Martin Brodeur has his chance to end similarities of series...
Newark Star Ledger-- Ryan Callahan rejuvenated, Rangers need him so in Game 6 ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils not worried about the past, just focused on Game 6
Newark Star Ledger-- Is Martin Brodeur's stick-handling a good or bad thing?
Newark Star Ledger-- Rangers make no guarantees for Game 6...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils Dainius Zubrus: This may be my best chance for a Cup
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils-Rangers series so similar to the 1994 epic
USA Today-- Rangers have overcome adversity before
Globe and Mail-- Messier's guarantee a distant memory to Brodeur
National Post-- Rangers coach John Tortorella is a master motivator
National Post-- No Messier type guarantee for Rangers this time around

Previous items on this series

Game One
Game Two
Game Three
Game Four
Game Five

Simple solution to Coyote concerns, fine the owner!

News item:  The Phoenix Coyotes are under investigation for some of their actions after losing the NHL's Western Conference final to the Los Angeles Kings.

The visual was kind of interesting we must admit, the final two minutes or so of the Western Final had all the ingredients for a scene out of West Side Story, a nasty hit, possibly accidental or possibly illegal or dirty, (all depending on your point of view) left one of the Coyotes to be helped off the ice in visible pain.

From that point of the overtime frame the Coyotes clearly lost their focus, still angered by the non call, perhaps spurred on by a crowd that was more than a little hostile to both the Kings and the referees, the Coyotes let the emotion of the moment distract from the task at hand, that of beating the Kings and extending the series.

So, as is the case when these things happen, the Kings shortly after scored the winning goal, chaos erupted at (perhaps the first time in that arena's history that any visible form of emotion has erupted) and the glaring began.

Beyond the threats to the officiating staff by Martin Hanzal or the out loud ruminations of a fix by Mike Smith, there was that rather uncomfortable hand shake line, where perhaps the Arizona State Police should have been dispatched to watch over the post game salutations.

They did manage to make it through the handshakes without a line brawl, though it did seem close didn't it?

And now, it seems there will be an investigation, trying to determine if the Coyotes went beyond the usual expressions of regret of a season at end.

Of course, we're not sure what exactly you do with a franchise that technically has no one in charge, the Coyotes the seemingly never ending wards of the state that they are, have been league run for a few years now, so if Colin Campbell feels the urge to fine or suspend Coyote officials and/or players, where exactly to start?

In most cases when a team lets things get as close to out of control as they were a few nights back in Phoenix, the punishment starts at the top and works its way down the line.

So, ahem, Mr. Bettman, a moment of your time please, we'd like to talk about your hockey team...

Globe and Mail-- Coyotes under investigation for actions after Game 5 loss
Globe and Mail-- Brown hit on Rozsival was clean
National Post-- Coyotes finish season under a cloud
Toronto Sun-- Coyotes chirped Kings during handshake
Toronto Sun-- The most awkward handshake
Toronto Sun-- Doan goes off on referees
Arizona Republic-- Phoenix Coyotes wrap year on high, low notes
Arizona Republic-- Phoenix Coyotes bitter taste from series shouldn't overshadow...

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Game Five -- New Jersey at New York Rangers -- May 23, 2012

It's momentum Devils, as the Eastern Stanley Cup Final makes the trek back to New York for game five.

The Devils on the strength of a convincing victory on Monday have turned the Eastern Final into a best of three showdown now and judging by the energy level of the most recent game, the team that dresses in red and black seems to have much more jump than the guys in the Blueshirts.

The Rangers perhaps have had their hard road previous finally catch up to them, the two consecutive seven game series that led to the final, could very well have finally caught up with New Yorkers, the Devils have been quicker to the puck, faster into the zone and for the most part have controlled the flow of play on the ice, only the Rangers remarkable ability to pick up a key goal at a key time has provided for the two Ranger victories.

If not for the goaltending of Henrik Lundqvist, this series may very well have been brought to an end after but four games, such was the control of play that the Devils have provided for, only finish around the net and a bit of luck has kept them from a Stanley Cup final thus far.

The Rangers, as tired looking as they seem at times, will have to dig a little deeper now, the first step of course tonights game at Madison Square Garden, regardless of the past, their present and perhaps their future dictates that another lengthy series is at hand, (no doubt much to the enjoyment of the waiting LA Kings) whether there is any gas left in their tank will be determined tonight.

Game Five-- New Jersey 5 at New York Rangers 3

The Devils lead the series 3 games to 2

Previews and Reviews


New York Post-- Devils get last laugh after Blueshirts erase 3-0 hole
New York Post-- Gabby, Callahan finally deliver
New York Post-- Dubinsky's return a big hit for Blueshirts
New York Post-- Callahan a standout in tough loss
New York Post-- Rangers don't' need Messier's words, they need his Game 6 performance
New York Post-- Marty, Devils face ghosts of 1994
New York Post-- This time, King a mere commoner
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils relinquish early lead, hold on to beat NY Rangers...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers face their greatest comeback challenge down 3-2...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers can't save goalie Henrik Lundqvist in 5-3 loss...
NY Daily News-- John Tortorella still confident NY Rangers forwards can rediscover...
NY Daily News-- Ruslan Fedotenko provides NY Rangers with spark despite 5-3 loss...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Stephen Gionta steps out of the shadows in Game 5 win
Newark Star Ledger-- Pete DeBoer confident Devils will come up with big Game 6
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Martin Brodeur was prepared to be the goat ...
Newark Star Ledger-- How did you make it through wild 3rd period?
Newark Star Ledger-- Rangers flip switch too late in Game 5 loss to Devils
Newark Star Ledger-- Ryan Carter's game-winning goal in Game 5 ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils blow three-goal lead, recover to beat Rangers...
USA Today-- Ryan Carter lifts Devils to 5-3 win vs. Rangers
USA Today-- Devils beat Rangers 5-3 for series lead
Globe and Mail-- Devils squander three goal lead but score late in third to take Game 5
Globe and Mail-- Rangers top guns letting them down
Globe and Mail-- Never doubt the Lou Lamoriello Way
Toronto Star-- Things I'm Not Doing
Toronto Star-- New Jersey Devils beat NY Rangers 5-3 in Game 5
National Post-- Devils recover to take series lead against Rangers


New York Post-- Rangers coach to 'pray' for more goals from forwards
New York Post-- Rangers' Rupp not sorry for hitting Devils' Brodeur
New York Post-- Devils, Rangers coaches clearly don't like each other
New York Post-- Devils coach says 'emotion' took over in feud with Tortorella
New York Post-- Devils' Salvador has become scoring sensation in playoffs
New York Post-- Heart of the matter is Rangers have plenty
New York Post-- Tortorella, DeBoer face-off latest episode of "When Coaches Clash"
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers and coach John Tortorella must win Game 5 ...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers coach John Tortorella says plan is to 'pray' for goals ...
NY Daily News-- NY Rangers' Mike Rupp admits punch at NJ Devils...
NY Daily News-- Peter DeBoer finally gets hot under call for NJ Devils...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils' Martin Brodeur says punch from NY Rangers ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Will Stephen Gionta's playoff success open the door ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils two wins away from facing Kings in Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- What has impressed you most about coaching staff
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils defensemen live in long shadow but making names ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils coach Pete DeBoer has fire that is reminiscent of Pat Burns
Newark Star Ledger-- Rangers follow maddening postseason formula right into ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Mike Rupp says nothing to make of incident with Martin Brodeur
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils Bryce Salvador enjoying playoff run... 
Newark Star Ledger-- Emotion took over in exchange with John Tortorella
USA Today-- Devils carrying offensive play as East final resumes
USA Today-- Devils expect few fireworks in Game 5
Globe and Mail-- Rangers, Tortorella look to the heavens for inspiration
Globe and Mail-- Rangers college kid mades the grade
National Post-- Rangers appear to be in trouble
National Post-- Martin Broduer vs Henrik Lundqvist...

Previous items on this series

Game One
Game Two
Game Three
Game Four