Given that Los Angeles won the Stanley Cup in 2012, most of the current Kings can lean on their past experiences to stay level-headed just one win away from another championship.
Rookie Tyler Toffoli doesn’t have that luxury. This is all new to the 22-year-old forward and while that hasn’t stopped him from contributing throughout the postseason, he can’t help but be giddy this close to fulfilling his dreams.
“I fell asleep at 9 [on Tuesday night], woke up at 12 and then didn’t fall back asleep ’til about 3,” Toffoli said, per NHL.com. “I was excited. There was a lot of thoughts going through my mind. But today, it’s all business. You’ve got to be focused and ready for the big task at hand.”
Toffoli admitted that he’s leaning on those that have been in this situation before to help him keep his nerves in check. It should help that when he steps onto the ice tonight, it will often be with 29-year-old Jeff Carter.
Toffoli probably won’t need to be the hero for the Kings tonight, but he’s already done more than they likely hoped for going into the playoffs. If he raises the Cup, it will be because he earned the right.