Give the Devils their due: Sunday's notes

June 9, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar (11) tries to screen a shot by New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur (right) and defenseman Bryce Salvador (24) during the third period of game five of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals at the Prudential Center. The Devils won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE

The Los Angeles Kings have charged their way to the brink of a Stanley Cup championship with one of the most impressive playoff runs in recent memory, but the New Jersey Devils aren't going down without a fight. Last night, they held off elimination with a 2-1 victory in Game 5, bringing the series to within 3-2 for L.A. and forcing a Game 6 Monday night. This was the Kings' first road loss of the playoffs so far, so if the Devils can somehow take this to Game 7, who knows what might happen?

Just give thanks that this series has finally given us a bit of drama, while reading this morning's hockey notes...

The Toast of Music City voting is open... go to People & Places -> Best Blog and cast your daily vote for OTF!

Nashville Predators News

Preds in review: Andrei Kostitsyn - Predators Insider
Up until the late-night episode, things were going well...

KuklasKorner : Oil Patch : Tales From The Road: Nashville
An Oilers blogger recounts her visit to Smashville from a few months ago.

Around the Wide Wide World of Hockey

Martin Brodeur Sparkles as New Jersey Devils Win 2-1 Over Los Angeles Kings - In Lou We Trust
Yeesh, this makes him sound like one of those vampires from Twilight. Still, the Devils hung on admirably down the stretch in this one.

The Los Angeles Kings have found adversity at exactly at the wrong time while losing Game 5 - ESPN
L.A. has been rolling along so far, so how will they handle the pressure heading into Game 6?

The Kings have nothing nice to say to a cut and bleeding Anton Volchenkov | Backhand Shelf
Where do you draw the line between ultra-competitiveness and a lack of class?

How have the Kings shut down Kovalchuk? By not trying to. | Backhand Shelf
I dig this line: "Funny how that works. When you think about defence exclusively, all you do is end up playing defence. When you worry about controlling the play like the Kings do, you end up getting to play more on offence."

Doubt surrounds reports of a financial saviour for Devils - The Globe and Mail
I'm shocked that David Shoalts doubts those reports of a deal that will save the Devils.

Down Goes Brown: A New Jersey Devil's guide to coming back from a 3-0 series deficit
"DO: Draw inspiration from diehard New Jersey fans who are still supporting you. Look, that one guy is even wearing a devil costume! DO NOT: Notice that the costume seems especially realistic, and the guy only seems to show up long enough to laugh evilly while watching Adam Henrique sign some sort of document every time a game reaches a crucial moment."

Hockey World: Healthy Laraque looking for another shot in NHL - Edmonton Journal
I would think he's burned a lot of bridges back to the NHL, but besides the Laraques story, Jim Matheson has a number of tales from around the league.

It’s a great year to be a middling free agent | Edmonton Journal
Between the paper-thin market and the skyrocketing salary structure, some guys are going to cash in.

The Simmons family heirloom of living and dying for your favorite team - Grantland
A fine read here on the double-edged sword that is fandom.

Top 5 pre-draft trade possibilities - Ottawa Sun
When the Final concludes, the horse trading should commence.

City Of Glendale Approves Coyotes Lease Agreement - Five For Howling
They're not quite home yet, but it's getting closer.

Rick Jeanneret To Be Inducted Into Hockey Hall Of Fame - Die By The Blade
How was he not in there already?

Norfolk Admirals: 2012 Calder Cup Champions - Raw Charge
Norfolk was ridiculously dominant, winning 43 of their last 46 games. What do you say, bump them up to the NHL and send down Columbus?

Does hockey have a personality deficiency? | Backhand Shelf
Uh, yeah.

Lastly, take a tour around the league via last night's "Hotstove" from HNIC:


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