LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 4: A view inside the arena prior to the game between the New Jersey Devils and the Los Angeles Kings in Game Three of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final at Staples Center on June 4, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noah Graham/NHLI via Getty Images)

Fact File: Kings make history – again


After two narrow wins in New Jersey, the Kings cruised to a 4-0 victory in Game 3 to take a commanding 3-0 series lead in the 2012 Stanley Cup finals.

Speaking of 3-0 series leads, Los Angeles has now taken one in every round of the playoffs. Since the NHL adopted it’s current playoff format in 1987, the Kings are the only team to have ever accomplished that feat.

Here are a few more facts to chew on:

— Believe it or not, this was New Jersey’s first game out of the Eastern Time Zone since Jan. 14. Maybe that was part of the problem…

— It’s finally happened! We finally got a non-Flyer atop the playoff goalscoring leaderboard when Anze Kopitar netted his eighth goal of the playoffs, tying Claude Giroux and Danny Briere for the NHL lead. Philadelphia’s playoff run ended on May 8.

— On a similar note: With an assist in Game 3, Drew Doughty now leads all blueliners with 13 points. He wrestled the top spot away from the New York Rangers’ Dan Girardi. The Rangers were eliminated in the Eastern Conference finals, but thanks to the Kings’ dominance, Doughty has actually played in three fewer games.

— Jeff Carter finally ended the series drought on power-play goals at 4:15 of the third period. Neither team netted a single goal with the man advantage in Games 1 and 2. Just how rare is that? As far as the Stanley Cup finals go, that’s just the third time it’s happened in 60 years. The last time it happened was in 1994 when the New York Rangers played the Vancouver Canucks.

— With 46 postseason road wins in total, we’re still tied for the NHL record. New Jersey will either break the record on Wednesday or the Los Angeles Kings will hoist the Cup.

— Neither team managed more than nine shots on goal in any period of this contest. Not including overtime, the New Jersey Devils are the only team to accumulate more than 10 shots on goal in a single period, doing it in the first and third frames of Game 2.

— The New Jersey Devils have not held the lead at any point during the Stanley Cup finals.

Alumni rosters announced for Bruins-Habs at Gillette Stadium

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The Winter Classic Alumni Game is back this year, scheduled for New Year’s Eve at Gillette Stadium between former members of the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins.

Today, the NHL announced the rosters and coaching staffs.

Famous ex-Habs that will take to the outdoor ice include Larry Robinson, Guy Carbonneau, and Mats Naslund. Behind the bench will be Yvan Cournoyer, Jacques Demers and Guy Lafleur, among others.

The home side will counter with Bruins legends Ray Bourque, Cam Neely, and “Nifty” Rick Middleton, while Don Cherry, Mike Milbury, and Derek Sanderson will be among the coaches. (Quite a trio of personalities right there.)

Here are the full rosters:


NBCSN will broadcast the alumni game nationally in the United States, while Sportsnet and TVA Sports will have it in Canada.

The 2016 Winter Classic will be played the next day (on NBC).

Goalie nods: Andersen’s ‘flu-like symptoms’ mean Khudobin starts versus Flames

Anton Khudobin, Frederik Andersen
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With Frederik Andersen experiencing “flu-like symptoms” (PHT diagnosis: it might be the flu), the Anaheim Ducks will turn to backup Anton Khudobin for tonight’s home game versus Calgary.

Khudobin could, in turn, be backed up by Josh Gibson, recalled today from AHL San Diego. The Ducks have officially listed Andersen as “questionable.”

Khudobin (3-3-0, .917) has not started a game in over a week. His last action came exactly a week ago, after Andersen got the hook versus Nashville.

Andersen may or may not travel with the Ducks for tomorrow’s game at Arizona.

The Ducks, of course, are coming off a 5-0 loss to Tampa Bay, a result that produced the following quote from Ryan Kesler:

After a four-game winning streak to start November, Anaheim has since dropped five of its last seven.

Karri Ramo will be in net for the Flames. After a terrible start to the season, he’s been much better lately, allowing just eight goals combined in his last four starts.


Craig Anderson for the Senators. Antti Niemi for the Stars.

Torts: Jackets still need more ‘bite’

John Tortorella

The hope was that the Columbus Blue Jackets would be jolted into a great, long winning streak, and their season would be saved.

The reality of John Tortorella’s first month behind the bench has been, well, reality. The Jackets are 8-7-0 since Todd Richards was fired. Better than 0-7-0, sure, but at 8-14-0 overall, they remain last in the Eastern Conference.

Fifteen games into his tenure, Tortorella is still trying to get his message across.

“A big reason why we bring them in (to practice yesterday and today) is because we don’t have a full understanding of the standard we need to be at in all areas of the game,” he told The Columbus Dispatch. “Some things you can’t control in our game, but it’s how hard you play, how hard you are with your bite as a team, and the pace you play with – you can control that.”

The Jackets play Wednesday in New Jersey, where they’ll look to shake off Sunday’s disappointing home loss to San Jose. Columbus held a 3-1 third-period lead in that one. The Sharks scored four straight to win 5-3.


— The Canucks need ‘more bite’

The Rangers are better when they have ‘more bite’

Sharks sign Zubrus, because DeBoer


The San Jose Sharks have signed forward Dainius Zubrus to a one-year, two way contract, the club announced today.

Zubrus was given a tryout with the Sharks last week.

The 37-year-old played 74 games with the Devils last season, scoring just four goals with six assists. His contract was then bought out.

According to a Mercury News source, the decision to sign Zubrus lay “mainly” with his former coach in New Jersey, now San Jose’s bench boss, Pete DeBoer.

“He looks good,” DeBoer said of Zubrus last week, per CSN Bay Area. “He looks close. It’s tough to find six-foot-four, 215-pound guys who can play. … He’s an easy guy to play because he’s defensively reliable. He plays a big possession, heavy game. There’s a lot to like there.”

In a related move, the Sharks have reassigned forward Nikolay Goldobin to the AHL.

Related: Where’s the depth in San Jose?