Monday, June 11, 2012

Stanley Cup Final Game Six -- New Jersey at Los Angeles -- June 11, 2012

If indeed the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs prove to be Martin Brodeur's farewell tour, then the New Jersey Devils goaltender is making the best of his time in the NHL sunset.  Brodeur has provided the one life line that his Jersey team mates can cling onto, staving off elimination twice now, through Brodeur's remarkable work on the New Jersey goal line, the Devils have clawed their way back from a 3-0 deficit and could with a win tonight, send the series back home to Newark, tied at three, with the advantage and momentum shift moving in the Devils favor.

To get there the Devils will need to add to the reliable Brodeur's efforts, something they suddenly have found the formula for the memory of their Game Three implosion now well behind them. The Kings on the other hand have struggled to close out a series that they seemed destined to win with relative ease just a few games ago.

From that pivotal and convincing victory of Game Three, the Kings have ceded some of the ice that they controlled with little difficulty in the first three games. The breathing space that they have allowed the Devils to take back, now runs the risk of changing the dynamic of a series that seemed all but over, now, as they say we have a series and should the Devils once again prove to be spoilers to the California party planning for Game Six, then all bets would be off as to which team will be carrying Stanley around at the end of the series.

A Devils win on Monday changes the dynamic of this series, shifting the focus of the potential first Stanley Cup for Los Angeles to the prospect of a team coming back from a 3-0 disaster to a historic gut check type of effort that would join the ranks of the very few in NHL history.

The fourth win is always the hardest one to accomplish in a Stanley Cup final, the Kings have had two chances to claim that victory, one more arrives tonight, should they fail to close out on home ice in Game Six, then the Devils we imagine shift from the underdog to the favourite in pretty short order.

Game Six-- New Jersey 1 at Los Angeles 6

LOS ANGELES WINS the series 4 games to 2

Previews and Reviews


Los Angeles Times-- Majestic moment for the Los Angeles Kings
Los Angeles Times-- L. A.'s new royalty, Kings turn tumult in Stanley Cup triumph
Los Angeles Times-- At last, the Kings have a Stanley Cup answer
Los Angeles Times-- Kings win the Stanley Cup with 6-1 victory over Devils
Los Angeles Times-- Kings' Jeff Carter silences all the doubters
Los Angeles Times-- Kings start blitz after Steve Bernier's boarding penalty
Los Angeles Times-- A long wait makes the Kings' Stanley Cup party sweeter
Los Angeles Times-- L. A. fans get ready to party like it's er, the first time
Los Angeles Times-- Kings' Dustin Penner learned what it takes to win the Cup with the Ducks
LA Daily News-- Reign dance: L. A. Kings win their first-ever Stanley Cup
LA Daily News-- Kings claim first Stanley Cup in 45 year history
LA Daily News-- Bernier, Devils crash at worst possible time
LA Daily News-- The real Quick? Not seen as on TV say teammates
LA Daily News-- Kings goalie Quick receives named playoff MVP
LA Daily News-- Banner day for Kings -- After 45 years, L. A. has its Cup
LA Daily News-- 'It's OK to cry' -- Kings and their fans drink it in
LA Daily News-- On ice-- A perfect ending for the L. A. Kings
LA Daily News-- Kings parade and rally to be held Thursday in downtown L. A.
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils proud that they never quit after falling in 3-0 hole against Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- One major penalty leaves Devils in despair and Kings as champions
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils must answer questions as they start to look toward next season...
Newark Star Ledger-- What was the worst moment of Game 6?
Newark Star Ledger-- Enduring legacy of Devils' Stanley Cup run is effect it had on fans, Newark
Newark Star Ledger-- Stanley Cup Finals are over and now questions about his future begin...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Martin Brodeur will play next season, hopes to stay in New Jersey
Newark Star Ledger-- Steve Bernier deserves sympathy, not rage, for a penalty that will follow...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils fans, hats off or fighting mad?
NY Post-- Devils dominated by Kings in Stanley Cup clincher
NY Post-- Pride not enough for Devils to prevail
NY Daily News-- LA Kings rock NJ Devils 6-1 in Game 6...
USA Today-- Kings beat Devils to win first Stanley Cup title
USA Today-- Boarding penalty leads to Kings' clinching win
USA Today-- No surprise: Jonathan Quick is playoff MVP
USA Today-- NBC's NHL Stanley Cup Final finally gets a TV ratings uptick
Globe and Mail-- Kings Jonathan Quick collects Conn Smythe Trophy
Globe and Mail-- Kings win Stanley Cup
Globe and Mail-- Credit officials for making tough call on Bernier game misconduct
Globe and Mail-- L. A. fans get their first drink from Lord Stanley's mug
Globe and Mail-- Aging Devil the saviour of a dreary NHL spring
Globe and Mail-- L. A. Kings' Stanley Cup win makes '20 million dreams' come true
Globe and Mail-- Devils comeback snuffed out in Game 6
Globe and Mail-- Kings will be able to reload under salary cap
Globe and Mail-- Mirtle takes your Stanley Cup questions
Sports Illustrated-- Crown the Kings: Los Angeles caps unlikley run with first Stanley Cup
Sports Illustrated-- Quick's breakthrough year, playoffs conclude with Conn Smythe...
Sports Illustrated-- Devils' Stanley Cup comeback ends with Game 6 loss to Kings..
Sports Illustrated-- Police act quickly to keep Los Angeles from violent celebrations


Los Angeles Times-- Kings' Stanley Cup momentum got thrown under a bus
Los Angeles Times-- Kings looking at the positive going into Game Six of Stanley Cup Final
Los Angeles Times-- New Jersey Devils' Bryce Salvador is peaking in post season
Los Angeles Times-- Now the Kings are feeling some heat in Stanley Cup Final
Los Angeles Times-- Kings must battle demons as well as Devils
LA Daily News-- Coach Darryl Sutter says Kings will 'move on' from past two defeats
LA Daily News-- LA Kings hope third time is charm against New Jersey Devils
LA Daily News-- Lombardi, Hextall seeking more than just one Stanley Cup Final run
LA Daily News-- Now would be a good time to start worrying
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils look to turn the other cheek as chippy exchanges arise
Newark Star Ledger-- Now that you know the Kings, who irks you most?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils continue to find motivation with season on the brink
Newark Star Ledger-- This Devils-Kings series has the feel of Red Sox-Yankees in 2004
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils, halfway to the impossible, have made this Stanley Cup Final...
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings maintain confidence after Game 5 loss to Devils stalls....
NY Post-- Devils try to turn over new 'Leaf' in Stanley Cup history
NY Post-- DeBoer's Devils are class acts
NY Post-- They're half way to making history
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils thrive under pressure..
NY Daily News-- Devils try to become 2004 Boston Red Sox ...
USA Today--This time, Kings vow to block out distractions
USA Today-- Tallinder creates trouble for Kings
Globe and Mail-- Kings controlling play but missing their target
Globe and Mail-- Advice to L. A. Kings: Hide the porn actresses and limos at Stanley Cup
Globe and Mail-- Noose gets tighter around Kings' necks
Globe and Mail-- Brodeur muscles in on Quick's show

Previous items on this series

Game One
Game Two
Game Three
Game Four
Game Five

Saturday, June 09, 2012

TV ratings stars knocked out of alignment for NHL's Stanley Cup Finals

In New York today, there is but one person feeling worse about his sports prospects than NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, that being the guy that works the betting window at Belmont, currently working overtime refunding all that "I'll Have Another" action for today's Triple Crown.

Now, there's a guy that's going to have a bad day

But the Commish must be a close second in the New York misery index, tonight's Game 5 in New Jersey, a potential Stanley Cup awarding night is basically going to be hit by avalanche of attention awarded to the rival NBA, a head to head battle that most likely will see the Heat/Celtics Game 7 ECF match up blow the NHL's  American overnight ratings into the deep pits of media despair.

Sure Hockey Night in Canada will probably do OK, if not spectacular with a potential Stanley Cup celebration on ice tonight, but in America, the ratings it would seem are destined for dismal.

For Gary Bettman's blue print to conquer America, the stars this playoff year clearly have not aligned.

Denied his dream match up of the Ranger and Kings in a cross continent battle for the hearts and minds and eyeballs of America, the Devils/Kings showdown seemingly hasn't resonated much beyond New Jersey and those parts of LA than can find the NBC Sportsnetwork on their cable systems.

You know your media strategy has been blow up rather nicely when TV sports columnists in LA start to refer to the main broadcaster of the NHL's American media strategy as the Witness Protection Program for television.

Add on the head to head match up with LeBron and the Celtics and the NHL is sinking further and further down the media scale of importance.

NBC has seemingly run up the white flag to its affiliates across America, shifted the Stanley Cup from the main NBC feed to the digital backwaters of NBC Sportsnet, partly we imagine to quell rebellion at the local levels when NHL hockey didn't quite deliver the audience that the local stations want.

Not that it seems to matter anyways, as even members of the LA media seem to be unaware as to who are actually on the Kings roster, as helpfully pointed out by Deadspin and when the Kings do get attention in LA, as Puck Daddy explains things get a little complicated.

With a little luck for the NHL, but perhaps not New Jersey fans, the Kings will win in five, removing the burden of coverage from all involved until the league next takes to the ice, whenever that may be.

Toronto Star-- TV ratings take a dip, but NHL remains positive
Globe and Mail-- Star power hasn't been enough to ignite NHL TV ratings in the US
Yahoo Sports-- Five reasons why 2012 Stanley Cup Final has been a ratings disappointment
Yahoo Sports-- Why aren't US fans watching Stanley Cup Final? ...
NESN-- LeBron James, NBA Ratings Juggernaut may be one foe...

Stanley Cup Final Game Five -- Los Angeles at New Jersey -- June 9, 2012

The Devils spoiled the Hollywood celebration, a gut check type of win that arrived in the nick of time, denying Los Angeles the opportunity to celebrate another Championship banner for the Staples Centre, the first of the hockey ones in the Kings history that would share space with the much lauded Lakers.

Of course, one win, as good of a push back win as it was for the Devils, does not make for the turning of the tide, but another win on home ice tonight could make what has been a less than enthralling Stanley Cup final a little bit interesting.

Game four didn't offer much in the way of drama for the first two periods, reminiscent more of a mid season game of tedious hockey than of Stanley Cup timbre, the third one, a period dominated by the Devils for perhaps the first time in the series, at least provided notice that there was still a pulse on the New Jersey bench.

Game Five, has the opportunity to once again be the final game of the season, as will any subsequent ones to come, the Kings still in command of the series with a 3 games to 1 lead, the sweep denied on Wednesday, LA can still close out the Devils at the Prudential Centre tonight.

No doubt head coach Darryl Sutter has spent the last two days reinforcing the message that it's better to shut down the Devils aspirations tonight, rather than give them another lifeline and momentum.  The Kings may have missed out on the chance to celebrate with their fans on home ice, but better to come home with the Cup tonight and let the celebration begin, than to find themselves suddenly fighting for their playoff ambitions in a game six.

Game Five-- Los Angeles Kings 1 at New Jersey Devils 2 

Los Angeles leads the series 3 games to 2

Previews and Reviews


Los Angeles Times-- Devils send series back to L. A. with 2-1 victory over Kings
Los Angeles Times-- Devils captain Zach Parise answers questions with a goal
Los Angeles Times-- New Jersey Devils' Bryce Salvador is peaking...
LA Daily News-- Devils extend series with 2-1 victory
LA Daily News-- Kings fail again to win crown, as Devils extend series
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings maintain confidence after Game 5 loss to Devils ...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Zach Parise ends his goal-scoring drought in Game 5 win
Newark Star Ledger-- With another Kings loss, Stanley Cup finals finally getting interesting
Newark Star Ledger-- Anton Volchenkov an example of team's fight to overcome Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils fans have reason to believe after Game Five win in Stanley Cup Finals
NY Post-- Devils force Cup Finals back to L. A. with Game 5  victory
NY Post-- They're halfway to making history
NY Post-- Vets gave N. J. reason to believe
NY Post-- Parise leads way for Devils
NY Post-- Devils believe they can come back
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils stave off elimination in Game 5...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils try to become 2004 Boston Red Sox
USA Today-- NHL's Devils, Kings still writing Stanley Cup ending
USA Today-- Devils force Game 6 with 2-1 win vs. Kings
Globe and Mail-- Devils nip Kings to force Game 6
Globe and Mail-- Doubt surrounds reports of a financial saviour for Devils


Los Angeles Times-- Kings Dustin Brown hasn't been the same in the Final
Los Angeles Times-- Bring on the hate: Los Angeles Kings set for Devils' hostile setting 
Los Angeles Times-- Los Angeles Kings' Simon Gagne talks about concussion symptoms
Los Angeles Times-- After missed opportunities, Kings eager for a second chance
Los Angeles Times-- Kings will have to go on the road again
LA Daily News-- Sutter's psych job proves to be effective
LA Daily News-- Kings must finish Devils, or tempt fate in Stanley Cup Final
LA Daily News-- Different place, same objective for Kings
LA Daily News-- Memo to NBC Sports Net -- you're welcome
LA Daily News-- Kings return to their happy place
LA Daily News-- Pattern calls for Game 5 closeout
LA Daily News-- Matt Greene, Jarret Stoll in it to win it
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils prepare for Game 5 against Kings with optional morning skate
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils fans, get ready for Game 5 by showing your spirit..
Newark Star Ledger-- Zach Parise and Ilya Kovalchuk must score if Devils are to keep it going
Newark Star Ledger-- Actually, Devils have come back from 3-1 deficit before
Newark Star Ledger-- Give 3 reasons why Devils will win Game 5
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Martin Brodeur and Patrik Elias do not see the end in sight
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Zach Parise said ankle is not an issue for rest of Stanley Cup finals
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils keep same lines from Game 4 for practice today
Newark Star Ledger-- Why has first goal been so important?
Newark Star Ledger-- Should Devils try and rattle Jonathan Quick?
Newark Star Ledger-- One Devilish situation has this group believing
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' power play losing punch as chance still fall flat
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils keep level head, look to fight back against Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Can Martin Brodeur keep up strong play?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils return home with first win and looking for more to turn series
NY Post-- Devils believe they can come back
NY Post-- Devils' Henrique has experience rallying from 0-3 hole
NY Post-- DeBoer's lineup shifts pay off for Devils
NY Post-- Serby's Q and A with.. Lou Lamoriello
NY Post-- Brodeur puts Devils in spot to make historic comeback
NY Daily News-- Devils look to stay alive against LA Kings in Game 5
NY Daily News-- DeBoer tinkers game plan as NJ Devils survive...
USA Today-- NHL's Devils, Kings still writing Stanley Cup ending
USA Today-- Devils want to keep comeback hopes alive
USA Today-- Kings lacked breaks in Game 4 not focus
Globe and Mail-- Devils take their cue from Brodeur
Globe and Mail-- Kings one win away from Cup but know that Devils are still fighting
Globe and Mail-- Devils' coach DeBoer brings the funny
Globe and Mail-- Kings regroup, take to road
Globe and Mail-- Brodeur throws Devils a life preserver
National Post-- Devils coach Pete DeBoer keeps his eyes on the prize
National Post-- Devils ready to play one moment at a time

Previous Items on the series

Game One
Game Two
Game Three
Game Four

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Stanley Cup Final Game Four -- New Jersey at Los Angeles -- June 6, 2012

With game three about as close to a capitulation as a team could provide, it would appear that all that remains to be seen this year is whether the Kings can close out the Stanley Cup in four straight.

The Kings dominated Game Three in regal fashion, owning pretty well every aspect of the game and seeming to drain the Devils of any ambition by the time the final horn went.

A quick scam of the New Jersey/New York papers paints a pretty grim picture of a bounce back for the east coasters, and with the evidence of game three, it would seem most hockey observers concur with the synopsis.

Really, when you have questions such as Who has been the biggest no show in the Stanley Cup Finals,   If that was max effort, Devils have no hope and What disgusted you most about Game 3? Well, suffice to say that the homecoming probably isn't going to end in a parade we imagine...

One thing would seem certain, leaving as many power play opportunities to pass by without result is not exactly the course to a Stanley Cup parade, game three was such that one point you almost expected the Devils to decline the penalty, just to see if their luck would change.

For the Kings, the opportunity to close out the series and share the Stanley Cup celebration with Los Angeles is upon them. As one wit on Twitter put it on Monday night, with one more win, the Kings can say from the friendly confines of Staples that they pushed the Easy button and judging by their performance in rounds one, two, three and now four, it's been a pretty remarkable run.

As the Stanley Cup tradition goes and with the Kings in a position to clinch the series, the Cup will be in the house at Staples Centre for game four.They have been on a roll since the playoffs began and one imagines that they'll bring it all home on Wednesday night.

Game Four-- New Jersey 3 at Los Angeles 1

Los Angeles leads the series 3 games to 1

Previews and Reviews


LA Times-- Kings fail to finish off the Devils in Game 4
LA Times-- Kings will have to go on the road again
LA Times-- Instead of airing it out, Los Angeles Kings let air out of Staples
LA Times-- Devils' Adam Henrique is spot on against Kings
LA Times-- Kings miss several chances to put away Devils
LA Times-- The Devils made the Kings lose it
LA Times-- Kings' Willie Mitchell says postseason run is pretty sweet
LA Daily News-- No one's sleeping on Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick anymore...
LA Daily News-- Devils score 3 third-period goals in 3-1 win to deny Kings ...
LA Daily News-- Bang-bang goal gives Devils a sliver of hope
Newark Star Ledger-- Can Devils actually do it?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Adam Henrique continues to show poise beyond his years
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils win Game 4 by bridging young and old...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Adam Henrique and David Clarkson 'shave' Kings 3-0 lead
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils win 3-1, staying alive and moving series back to New Jersey
Newark Star Ledger-- Have NBC broadcasters been fair and balanced?
NY Post-- Devils beat Kings; force Game 5 back in Newark
NY Post-- Brodeur puts Devils in spot to make historic comeback
NY Post-- Power Plays
NY Post-- Devils' Parise will soon wear new jersey
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils hold off elimination in Stanley Cup Finals...
USA Today-- Despite Game 4 loss, Kings still confident in Cup pursuit
USA Today-- Brodeur, Henrique helps Devils stay alive
Globe and Mail-- Devils stay alive with 3-1 win to force Game 5
Globe and Mail-- Rookie Henrique comes up big for Devils 
Globe and Mail-- Kings are built to last
National Post-- Devils finally come alive, send series back to New Jersey
National Post-- Dominant Kings still a far cry from dynasties of old


LA Times-- Los Angeles Kings are close to the Cup, but are they close?
LA Times-- It's tough to beat Kings' Jonathan Quick
LA Times-- The versatile Stanley Cup - baptismal font and cereal bowl
LA Times-- Kings face a battle of nerves heading into Game 4
LA Times-- Kings trace current Stanley Cup run to March
LA Times-- It's polished effort as Los Angeles Kings close in on Stanley Cup
LA Daily News-- Kings notes and quotes from Tuesday
LA Daily News-- Simon Gagne talks about his comeback
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' mood is good; Anton Volchenkov comeback is possible
Newark Star Ledger-- Petr Sykora will return to lineup against Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Martin Brodeur will cherish playoff run no matter what happens
Newark Star Ledger-- Was Kings' first goal legit and did it make a difference in Game 3?
New York Post-- Devils routed by Kings need victory to avoid Stanley Cup Sweep
New York Post--  Devils call on Sykora to be scorer
USA Today-- Devils stay optimistic despite being dominated by Kings
USA Today-- Sutter's success rooted in hard work, honesty
USA Today-- Petr Sykora could return to Devils' lineup
Globe and Mail-- Kings on verge of capping one of most dominant recent Cup runs
Globe and Mail-- On a team deep with playoff stars, Quick has the edge for MVP

Previous items on this series

Game One
Game Two
Game Three

Monday, June 04, 2012

Stanley Cup Final Game Three-- New Jersey at Los Angeles -- June 4, 2012

Geography it seems wasn't a major at school for those planning the NHL's Stanley Cup playoffs schedule this year.

For some reason, which we imagine revolves around arena availability and such, the NHL has provided for an interesting schedule for this year's championship finale.

The Devils and Kings recently completed games one and two of the Finals, a two game stint that included a two day break between games one and two, allowing the Kings we imagine to enjoy the sights and sounds of Newark and providing for an attention diverting absence from the sports cycle in the USA.

So, now that the series is moving to California, we are treated to some kind of Mad Max Like race across the continent, with Saturday's game two in Newark going to OT, the Kings were no doubt hoping that their flight would still be able to sneak out of New Jersey early, early Sunday morning (which it did).

The Devils chose to sleep in their own beds on Sunday morning,  took to the air for the six hour flight later on in the day, all so both teams could be in place for game three on Monday night.

Two already travel weary teams, adding a mad dash and time zone, body altering shift to their to do list in pursuit of Stanley, a very strange way to run your Championship round one would think.

But, here we are, Game Three still on tap for Monday afternoon in LA, a 5 PM start for the west coast hockey fan who will challenge LA's notorious freeways at rush hour to make it for game time...

As for the hockey, the momentum is all on the side of the home side tonight, with two wins in their pocket, they can grab a stranglehold on the series with a game three win tonight.  If the Devils can't find a way to put more than a goal a night behind Jonathan Quick, this series will be over in a fashion that his surname surmises..

Los Angeles leads the series 3 games to 0

Previews and Reviews


Los Angeles Times-- It's polished effort as Los Angeles Kings close in...
Los Angeles Times-- Kings face a battle of nerves heading into Game 4
Los Angeles Times-- Flush with excitement L. A. is ready to crown...
Los Angeles Times-- Kings one win away from Stanley Cup triumph
LA Daily News-- One more Kings miracle?
LA Daiily News-- Kings' Gagne makes timely comeback
LA Daily News-- These Kings are acing their Final exam
LA Daily News-- New Jersey tries to keep stiff upper lip after defeat
LA Daily News-- Captain Messier is a fan of captain Brown
LA Daily News-- LA Kings one win away from title...
Newark Star Ledger-- Who has been the biggest no show...
Newark Star Ledger-- LA Kings on verge of winning first Stanley Cup
Newark Star Ledger-- What disgusted you most about Game 3?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils do nothing on power plays as Game 3 loss turns...
Newark Star Ledger-- For Devils, no shame in losing, unless it's like Game 3...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils need to get goals from top forwards to have any hope
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils lose 4-0, now sit one game away from elimination
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils Game 3 brings back memories of original Kings owner
NY Post-- Devils routed by Kings, need victory to avoid Stanley Cup sweep
NY Post-- If that was max effort, Devils have no hope
NY Post-- Devils confident they can find "life" in Los Angeles
NY Daily News-- LA Kings beat NJ Devils goalie Martin Brodeur...
NY Daily News-- LA Kings fans hold up "Jersey Shore" cast member heads...
USA Today-- Kings blank Devils to close in on Cup
USA Today-- Kevin Allen's three stars of Stanley Cup Game 3
USA Today-- Kings' Gagne plays first game since December
USA Today-- Kings' Quick putting up historic numbers
Globe and Mail-- Kings blank Devils to move within one win of Stanley Cup title
Globe and Mail-- Gretzky gets Game 3 under way at Staples Center
Globe and Mail--
National Post--
National Post--


Previous items on this series

And we thought that Bryzgalov was the er, eccentric goaltender?

As the NHL playoffs moved from round one to round two, much of the focus on the more colourful of NHL characters fell on the skates of Ilya Bryzgalov, the Philadelphia Flyers goaltender who could be counted on for a good quote and much in the way of head shaking at the fall out.

At times the commentary both by Bryzgalov and about Bryzgalov bordered on the side of the slightly strange to say the least, the pressure of a Flyers playoff exit it seems was destined to carry him through the summer as exhibit A that goaltenders are well, a little bit different.

But good news Ilya, buddy, the heat is off for now...

Maybe it's a bargaining position, maybe it's fact, regardless, the latest of Facebook posts from Tim Thomas, the Boston Bruins' goaltender is making for much conversation from twitter to bar room stool we imagine.

Thomas, who has been in the spotlight this year for a number of reasons, some of them even hockey related, has once again logged on to his Facebook account to somewhat cryptically offer his vision of world events and such, punctuating the latest developments as announcing his departure from the NHL for year, a decision that he states was one that revolved around friends, family and faith.

With a link to a British newspaper with dire warnings of our financial future, while also stumping for his goaltender equipment company, the Facebook posts have become a fairly entertaining trend of their own on the Twitter boards, offering of course much in the way of discussion on the possible reasons for Thomas' suggested sabbatical from the NHL.

For some it would seem that the latest from the talkative Tim is just a method to push the Bruins to trade him to a team more to his liking in a location he would rather be (we gather real estate agents west of the Mississippi should be paying attention here), while others think perhaps he's been watching too much television or listening to talk radio a bit more than he should.

Regardless of the background, for the moment anyways, it would appear that the now vacationing Bruins goaltender isn't going to play in 2012-13, leaving his 3 million or so salary behind and leaving the Bruins behind a salary cap headache that may, more than anything else push them to move him to a team that he likes, providing that team will have him.

If indeed, part of the genesis of the Thomas departure is of concerns over the US and world economy, we wonder of the wisdom of leaving a guaranteed 3 million dollars on the table, heading into the perceived financial Armageddon to come.

It's an interesting approach to financial planning, but really, considering Gary Bettman's magic with bankrupt and beyond bankrupt NHL franchises of late, who would you rather spend the financial apocalypse with?

If anyone can keep the money flowing through financial turmoil, surely with his track record it's the Commish isn't it?

Uh, ok, perhaps a bad example..

Hmm, maybe Thomas is on to something and the end is nigh and then it's every goaltender for himself...

At any rate, we imagine, considering his attention to world financials and such that he's made the required financial moves to take a year off.

However, should things go sideways for a bit, like many North Americans he could always use his credit card, you know just in case things get a little tight over the next year or so, shouldn't be a problem there...
Boston Herald-- Thomas makes big stop
Boston Herald-- Tim Thomas confirms he will take the year off
Boston Herald-- Bruins doubt about Tim Thomas
Boston Globe-- Thomas confirms that he won't play
Boston Globe-- Tim Thomas and the art of media delusion
NESN-- Tim Thomas confirms he won't play for Boston Bruins next year
NESN-- Tim Thomas' confusing decision puts Bruins in a bind...
Globe and Mail-- Tim Thomas confirms he's taking a year away from hockey
National Post-- Bruins' Tim Thomas announces he will sit out next season
Toronto Star-- Applaud him for putting life before Stanley Cup pursuit
Toronto Sun-- Bruins' Tim Thomas confirms year off on Facebook
Sportnset-- Tim Thomas: Why Hockey's Not Important Tim Thomas will sit out 2012-2013 NHL season
USA Today-- Bruins goalie Tim Thomas explains NHL hiatus

Saturday, June 02, 2012

Stanley Cup Final Game Two -- Los Angeles at New Jersey -- June 2, 2012

By most accounts, the LA Kings should have won game number one skating away, such was the dominance of the Kings over the New Jersey Devils in the debut of the Stanley Cup Final last Wednesday.

However, as is the case with the Devils this season, New Jersey's favourite skaters hung around, waiting for an opportunity, few as they were and then when opportunity presented itself, the Devils took advantage of an LA miscue or fortune smiled on the Devils for just a moment.

Somehow the Devils managed to get a game that could have gotten away to go into Overtime, but in Game One, the Hockey Gods decided that the harder working team probably deserved the victory, Anze Kopitar scoring on a highlight reel overtime winner to provide the Kings with win number one, the countdown to Stanley on the coast now down to three wins.

The Kings will seek to head home two games up on Saturday, after a two day break the NHL returns to prime time with Game Number two from Newark.  A must win for the home side should the wish to serve notice that the finals won't be a Kings' coronation.

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

Los Angeles leads the series 2 games to 0

Previews and Reviews


LA Times-- Kings are ready and able to will a win in Game 2
LA Times-- For Kings' Jonathan Quick, it's wow and again
LA Times-- Yes, this Kings run is real, now breathe
LA Times-- Devils don't put blame on Martin Brodeur for Game 2 loss
LA Times-- Kings' Dustin Brown as hit maker - and hit taker
LA Times-- Kings win again in overtime to take 2-0 lead in Stanley Cup Final
LA Daily News-- Overtime is just like any other time for L. A.
LA Daily News-- L. A. fans, it's a good time to start dreaming
LA Daily News-- Defenseman Mitchell is ready for a parade
LA Daily News-- Kings take 2-0 series lead over New Jersey...
LA Daily News-- Kings win second game in overtime, 2-1
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils believe Stanley Cup finals are far from over
Newark Star Ledger-- Are Devils at a disadvantage against much-traveled Kings?
Newark Star Ledger-- Success in Stanley Cup Finals has people in L. A. paying attention...
Newark Star Ledger-- In Stanley Cup Finals, sometimes the only thing you can say is...
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils work hard on details in order to carry big sticks
Newark Star Ledger--  Devils lose to Kings 2-1 in overtime, fall behind 0-2 in series
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings' Carter happens upon Cup glory with overtime winner
Newark Star Ledger-- For Devils, Martin Brodeur's brilliance not quite enough
Newark Star Ledger-- Can the Devils even escape from Los Angeles?
Newark Star Ledger-- How can the Devils beat Kings' goalie Jonathan Quick
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils need to find some offence if they hope to come back...
Newark Star Ledger-- We can't feel sorry for ourselves
New York Post-- Devils drop second straight in OT to Kings
New York Post-- Brodeur gives a glove-ly effort despite Devils defeat
New York Post-- Devils face uphill battle after Kovalchuk's near-miss
NY Daily News-- In Stanley Cup finals NJ Devils have missed their opportunities...
NY Daily News-- LA Kings appear to be team of destiny in Stanley Cup Finals...
USA Today-- Jeff Carter OT goal gives Kings 2-0 series lead
USA Today-- Devils lacking offense in two home losses to Kings
USA Today-- Soaring Kings have that unstoppable look
Globe and Mail-- Quick's standout play proves bedeviling
Globe and Mail-- Los Angeles ready to party as Kings arrive home with Stanley Cup in sights
Globe and Mail-- Kings and Devils are close on the ice, but L. A. has huge lead on paper
National Post-- Kings' road streak alive, Devils in big hole with Game 2 loss
National Post-- Kings' Dustin Penner continues to grow
Toronto Sun-- Better not good enough for Devils
Toronto Sun-- The doubt about Doughty is gone
Toronto Sun-- Kings' a "Perfect 10" on the road


LA Times-- Kings don't need roadies
LA Times-- For Kings, 1993 doesn't really matter right now
LA Times-- Kings feel at ease while waiting for Game 2 of Stanley Cup Final
LA Times-- Devils' Zach Parise 'fusses up to Stanley Cup 'Hand of God' attempt
LA Times-- Justin Williams is so effective yet so little noticed
LA Times-- Devils' Martin Brodeur remains the goal standard
LA Daily News-- Kings coach Darryl Sutter -- From down on the farm to Stanley Cup shot
LA Daily News-- The Great Communicator: Kings have taken heed of Darryl Sutter's words ...
LA Daily News-- LA is used to tight games
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils have optional morning skate as they await Game 2 against Kings
Newark Star Ledger-- Kings look to extend their playoff record unbeaten road streak...
Newark Star Ledger-- Make your Devils-Kings Game 2 predictions
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils realize Stanley Cup Finals are far from over
Newark Star Ledger-- After the Stanley Cup Finals, Zach Parise will be in great demand
Newark Star Ledger-- Who is your all-time Cup Finals Devils player?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils' Zach Parise was hoping cameras didn't catch his illegal goal
Newark Star Ledger-- Martin Brodeur: Devils have come this far so might as well win...
Newark Star Ledger-- If Devils win it, what  would you do with the Stanley Cup for a day?
Newark Star Ledger-- Devils make no changes in practice before Game 2
Newark Star Ledger-- Rank this team's likability compared to other Stanley Cup teams
Newark Star Ledger-- Lou Lamoriello's influence extends beyond hockey...
New York Post-- Devils coach not worried about matchup game
New York Post-- Devils aim to avoid 0-2 Cup deficit
New York Post-- Devils sticking with same lines for Game 2
NY Daily News-- Ilya Kovalchuk, coach Peter DeBoer not concerned about ...
NY Daily News-- NJ Devils looking on bright side of Stanley Cup Finals Game 1 loss...
USA Today-- Kings' Justin Williams unheralded but not unappreciated
USA Today-- Previewing Stanley Cup Game 2 
USA Today-- Down 1-0 again, Devils debate how to rally
USA Today-- Devils need more shots to find holes in Quick
Globe and Mail-- Kings hope to exorcise ghosts of McSorley's illegal stick in Game 2
Globe and Mail-- 'Hand of Zach' keeps grip on present
Globe and Mail-- Devils, Kings both see room for improvement
Globe and Mail-- Kings rise on Doughty's shoulders
National Post-- Devils' Peter DeBoer not planning to 'stick' it to Kings
National Post-- Kings have eyes on the throne
National Post-- Devils' home was a little too hot for Game 1
Toronto Sun-- Devils Kovalchuk takes his lumps
Toronto Sun-- Five ways the Devils can be better
Toronto Sun-- Canadian goalie stars in decline
Toronto Sun-- DeBoer searching for answer to Kings
Toronto Sun-- The Kings of the road
Toronto Star-- New Jersey Devils off-ice feud backdrop to Stanley Cup pursuit

Previous items on this series

Game One