You might as well just hand the Stanley Cup over the Los Angeles Kings now. Up 3-0 in the series against the New Jersey Devils, this team is unstoppable. When the LA crowd was chanting “We want Cup!” towards the end of game three, it did not feel premature at all.
Despite being the eighth seed in the Western Conference, the Kings have had zero difficulty with no home ice advantage. Road games? Tough going into a hostile building? Nope. The Kings have won every single road game this postseason, an NHL first.
Not that they have lost a lot at home. They have only lost two games this entire postseason and are just one win away from touching that big silver thingy for the first time since coming into the league in 1967.
The Kings are certainly making history and doing it in a way that there is no question mark beside their name.
While you are polishing up the Cup, you might as well start putting Jonathan Quick’s name on the Conn Smythe trophy as well. There is a reason why Quick went to the All Star game for the first time this season. There is a reason he is the only Vezina nominee left in the playoffs. He deserves every single honor he gets and while it has been a team effort the past 17 games, Quick has still been a huge component of the Kings success, as he has all year long.
Quick has allowed two goals in three games. Martin Brodeur, 40, is not able to keep up with that kind of goaltending at the other end. Maybe in his younger days, but not at this stage of his career.
A 5 on 3 power play for the Devils? New Jersey could not score even then. At that point, not only was the game over, but the series was over.
Will the Devils come back with a vengeance in game 4? Probably. Is there a chance they can even win one and take it back to New Jersey? Sure. But if they go back to New Jersey, what is the point? With the Kings road record, home ice for the Devils is not going make one little tiny bit of difference, any more than it did the first three rounds of the playoffs or the first two games of this series.
The only advantage of this series going to a game five and the Cup being awarded in New Jersey is that there will be fewer people in downtown LA who will riot in celebration. (Come on, you know there is going to be one.)
After years of mediocrity, the Kings will have earned this one and for once will truly live up to their name. If the collective bargaining agreement does not get resolved by the end of summer, Los Angeles might be the reigning Stanley Cup champions longer than the usual time frame. Maybe that would make up for 45 years of futility.
For Kings fans, it’s about time. Just remember, Ducks did it before you!