Tag: 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Devils Goal

Kings’ Williams: “I’m pissed off — a lot of guys in that room are pissed off”


Has adversity crept into the Los Angeles dressing room?

Shortly after the Kings failed to close out New Jersey for the second straight game — suffering their first playoff losing streak in the process — forward Justin Williams displayed a level of frustration rarely seen from L.A. this postseason.

“I’m pissed off,” Williams said. “A lot of guys in that room are pissed off.”

Williams was one of the strongest Kings on the night, scoring their lone goal and stuffing the stat sheet in nearly 20 minute of ice time. But his words spoke louder than his play, especially on a night when several Kings said nothing with theirs.

Anze Kopitar had no shots on goal in over 22 minutes. Dustin Penner had as many penalties (one) as he did hits. Dustin Brown was held pointless for the fourth time in five games this series and didn’t play in the final four minutes of regulation.

The most telling quote about the Kings, though, might’ve come from a Devil.

“I think they’re so close to winning the Stanley Cup,” Martin Brodeur said. “I’m sure it’s getting to them a little bit, to be able to have all these chances and not capitalize on them.

“It’s a matter of us now going into a tough environment in L.A., to try to ruin the party again.”

Watch Stanley Cup Media Day devolve into a catfight with microphones

Parise Media
1 Comment

Check out the turf war that occurred during Zach Parise’s Stanley Cup media day session:

Having attended a Stanley Cup media day before, I can confirm scrums do get uncomfortably tight. There’s lots of jockeying for position and putting up with “hockey writer” musk, an enchanting mix of deodorant and stale coffee.

That said, I’ve never seen someone attack a microphone rather than, you know, the person operating it.

This guy realizes the mic is an inanimate object, right?

Stanley Cup finals preview: Kings vs. Devils, playoff experience


New Jersey Devils

Most postseason games:

Martin Brodeur (199), Patrik Elias (156), Petr Sykora (130), Dainius Zubrus (86), Anton Volchenkov (79), Bryce Salvador (68), Steve Bernier (62).

Stanley Cup finals appearances:

Sykora (2000, 2001, 2003, 2008, 2009), Brodeur (1995, 2000, 2001, 2003), Elias (2000, 2001, 2003), Volchenkov (2007), Zubrus (1997).

Stanley Cups won:

Brodeur (1995, 2000, 2003), Elias (2000, 2003), Sykora (2000, 2009)


— Game 1 will be the 200th career playoff game for Brodeur, making him just the second goalie in NHL history to accomplish the feat. The other? Patrick Roy, with 247.

— Brodeur will also become one of just 19 players in NHL history to play 200 postseason contests. The only other active player with a similar accomplishment is Detroit’s Nicklas Lidstrom (263), who is just three back of Chris Chelios for the all-time mark.

— Elias sits second all-time for playoff games by a Czech player, 24 behind Philly’s Jaromir Jagr. Sykora is fourth (behind Elias, Jagr and Bobby Holik.)

Los Angeles Kings

Most postseason games:

Mike Richards (77), Rob Scuderi (75), Justin Williams (65), Willie Mitchell (65), Jeff Carter (61), Dustin Penner (54).

Stanley Cup finals appearances:

Richards (Philadelphia, 2010), Carter (Philadelphia, 2010), Scuderi (Pittsburgh, 2008-09), Penner (Anaheim, 2007), Williams (Carolina, 2006), Matt Greene (Edmonton, 2006), Jarret Stoll (Edmonton, 2006).

Stanley Cups won:

Scuderi (Pittsburgh, 2009), Penner (Anaheim, 2007), Williams (Carolina, 2006).


— Penner is looking to become the first player in NHL history to win Cups with two of the NHL’s three California teams. The only other player to come close is Rob Blake, who went to the Cup finals with the Kings in 1993, then the Western Conference finals with San Jose in 2010.

— Stoll and Green hold the unique distinction of playing for the only two No. 8 seeds (since the format change) to make a Cup final.

— Kings bench boss Darryl Sutter lost the Cup final in 2004 (as a head coach with Calgary) to Tampa Bay and in 1992 (as an assistant with Chicago) to Pittsburgh.

Here’s the full Eastern and Western Conference finals schedule


The NHL’s schedule for the conference finals of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs has been released and you can take a look at it below. NBC Universal will televise every postseason game this year.

Without further ado, here’s the schedule:

* – If necessary, TBD = to be determined; All times Eastern.

Eastern Conference: No. 1 New York vs. No. 6 New Jersey

Game 1: Monday, May 14, at New York (8 p.m., NBCSN)
Game 2: Wednesday, May 16, at New York (8 p.m., NBCSN)
Game 3: Saturday, May 19, at New Jersey (1 p.m., NBC)
Game 4: Monday, May 21, at New Jersey (8 p.m., NBCSN)
*Game 5: Wednesday, May 23, at New York (8 p.m., NBCSN)
*Game 6: Friday, May 25, at New Jersey (8 p.m., NBCSN)
*Game 7: Sunday, May 27, at New York (8 p.m., NBCSN)

Western Conference: No. 3 Phoenix vs. No. 8 Los Angeles

Game 1: Sunday, May 13 at Phoenix (8 p.m., NBCSN)
Game 2: Tuesday, May 15 at Phoenix (9 p.m., NBCSN)
Game 3: Thursday, May 17 at Los Angeles (9 p.m., NBCSN)
Game 4: Sunday, May 20 at Los Angeles (3 p.m., NBC)
*Game 5: Tuesday, May 22 at Phoenix (9 p.m., NBCSN)
*Game 6: Thursday, May 24 at Los Angeles (9 p.m., NBCSN)
*Game 7: Saturday, May 26 at Phoenix (8 p.m., TBD)

Tippett on shot blocking: “I don’t know if it’s good for the game. It’s good for winning”

shot block coyotes

Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star takes an in-depth look at the postseason of blocked shots:

Perhaps it’s not a complete coincidence that the teams that currently lead the playoffs in shot blocks, the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals, are engaged in a series in which neither has scored more than three goals in a game. The Rangers, in fact, have played in a record 12 straight post-season games in which neither participant has hit four on the scoreboard.

The crowds of defenders clogging shooting lanes have become impossible enough to navigate that, if you’re an offensive player with the puck at the point, one of the lone wise options is to shoot 10 feet wide and hope for a fortuitous bounce off the back boards.

How to remove the net-front glut? Hall of famer Bob Gainey once bandied about a rule that outlawed the defensive player leaving his feet to block a shot. Pierre Page, the former NHL coach and GM, has suggested a variation of basketball’s three-in-the-key violation. Widening rinks might change some angles for the better.

Just as there are no easy answers, those with close ties to current results aren’t pushing for change.

Those with close ties to current results include Washington head coach Dale Hunter, New York head coach John Tortorella and Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett, whose Coyotes average 17 blocks per game.

“Basically, at this time of year you do whatever it takes to win,” Tippett told The Star. “And if that’s laying down in front of a shot and getting in a shot lane to deter a shot at the net, ultimately players feel like that gives you a better chance to win.”

At this time, I’d like to point out there’s as much shot blocking now as there was during those early, halcyon days immediately following the lockout. You know, when offense ruled and every game ended 8-7.

Consider this reverse chronological chart:

— Two years ago, Montreal blocked an amazing 408 in 19 games (21 per contest) en route to a surprising Eastern Conference finals appearance.

— In 2009, Pittsburgh blocked 406 on its way to the Stanley Cup. Of note, that was 174 blocks more than the No. 2 team, Detroit (232).

— In 2008, Philadelphia only played 17 games en route to the Eastern Conference final, but finished second in the league with 323 shot blocks.

— In 2007, Buffalo only played 16 games en route to the Eastern Conference final, but finished second in the league with 290 shot blocks. (Of note, that Sabres team also finished first in the NHL in offense.)

— In 2006, Carolina blocked 420 in 25 games (17 per) and won the Stanley Cup.

The reality is that, regardless of the style of play, blocking shots is a big part of postseason success.

Just ask Tip.

“I don’t know if it’s good for the game,” Tippett said. “It’s good for winning.”