I really caught a lot of grief when I had the audacity to predict the Kings were about to take out the Devils in five games to bring home the Stanley Cup (see NHL FINALS – KINGS VS. DEVILS?? – JUST AS I PREDICTED, dated 5/26/12).  All of it came from the fans of the eastern conference. 

As it turns out, it should have come from the Kings’ fans!  To suggest that this series would actually go back to New Jersey for a game five seems pretty ridiculous at this point.

Hey, I tried to warn you guys back east to pay attention to how Los Angeles plowed through the top three seeds in the West.  How they won the first two games on the road, then went home and won game three to take a commanding three games to none lead over all three teams.  How the only way New Jersey had a chance to win this series was to win game one. 

You’d think you would have paid attention.  BUT NOOOOOOOOOOO!  (A little John Belushi humor, there!) 

I know that the typical fan from New Jersey, or any of the surrounding areas (you know who you are) doesn’t like to take advice from anyone, let alone from someone west of the Appalachians. 

News flash – sports actually exists west of the Mississippi River!  Civilization actually exists beyond the Colorado Mountains! 

I know, I know, none of the alphabet networks or sports guru networks believe that it’s true, so why should you have thought it to be possible? 

I’m guessing that, as you’re team is picking their aching bodies up off the ice, wondering what freight train just ran them over, you might actually be a believer now.  If you’re still being stubborn, failing to acknowledge the talent, speed and brutality that the Kings are bringing to the arena each game, the only trip back to Jersey on the Devils’ horizon will be the final trip to clean out their lockers. 

Let’s face it, the Los Angeles Kings have proven to everyone willing to pay attention that they are the best team in the league, and have been for nearly eight weeks now.  They have taken on the best collective group of teams the league had to offer and smacked them down to size. 

If you still believe that they are simply a group of thugs that are pounding their way to the championship, take a look at their second goal of game three.  Kopitar makes a picture perfect pass from between the benches across the ice, hitting Williams in stride.  Williams takes it towards the corner, drawing the defense to him and then quickly passes back to the middle, hitting a trailing Brown who immediately passes it across to a hustling Kopitar for an easy tap in.

Check out the link to the Huff Post Sports.

The entire play took about four seconds and left the Devils standing and staring.  The looks on their faces told the story.  “How in the world do we stop that?”  (I’m guessing they didn’t actually say ‘world’, but you get the meaning!) 

After watching the Kings take apart Vancouver and St. Louis before performing an eerily similar destruction of my Coyotes, I am not at all surprised by what we are all witnessing right now. 

The Devils find themselves exactly where Phoenix was two weeks ago.  They have to find a way to take the Kings out of their rhythm. 

The Coyotes managed to do that in game four by being more aggressive and not letting L.A. ever get set.  That means they had to win the faceoff battle, the hits battle and the hustle battle.  They managed to do that and came away with one of only two victories the Kings have allowed their opponents to snag this playoff season. 

The Devils are certainly capable of doing the same.  Then again, they are from New Jersey, so taking advice from someone in Phoenix is probably not high on their list of things to do. 

Which puts me in an awkward situation.  Being a humble guy, I rarely like to gloat about being right. 

Okay, maybe just this one time…..I TOLD YOU SO!!!


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