|Los Angeles Kings||Chicago Blackhawks|
|5-on-5 Save %||.912||19th||.927||8th|
|# of PP's/Gm||3.46||10th||3.12||23rd|
|# of PK's/Gm||3.35||14th||2.94||4th|
Whoa, baby - these are two dynamite squads, whether look at the fancy stats or the plain old stuff.
The SB Nation Blogs
Los Angeles Kings
They're big, they're bad, and they're back to defend their title, after finishing off St. Louis in six games, then their California rivals from San Jose in seven. The star of the show these days in L.A. is goaltender Jonathan Quick, who is setting himself up for a gig in Sochi next year the way things are going:
At a time when many questions are being asked about the state of goaltending in Canada, the Americans have a surplus of high-end netminders heading into the 2014 Winter Olympics. Even though the Americans can also choose from among Craig Anderson (Ottawa Senators), Jimmy Howard (Detroit Red Wings), Cory Schneider (Vancouver Canucks) and Ryan Miller (Buffalo Sabres), who won tournament MVP honours in Vancouver in 2010, Quick is currently favoured to be the starter in Sochi for Team USA.
--- Eric Duhatschek, Globe & Mail
Leading the way up front is the dynamic duo of Jeff Carter and Mike Richards, but of course the Kings have any number of players who can deliver a big goal in times of need. Anze Kopitar, Justin Williams, Dustin Brown, etc. Even the defensemen are getting into the act, as Slava Voynov and Drew Doughty have both scored multiple goals in these playoffs.
The Hawks cruised through the regular season, and the first round against Minnesota, but hit a real pothole against the Red Wings before storming back to take that series. While any number of forwards have contributed along the way for Chicago, hope is building that Corey Crawford is able to live up to the challenge of a deep playoff run. So far, so good:
|2012 - Corey Crawford||12||740||8||4||21||2.08||337||316||.924||2|
The comeback series win over Detroit has Blackhawks fans thinking big fans, recalling the atmosphere in the Windy City after an episode in 2010 that we refer to in these parts as the Game 5 Horror:
The Blackhawks did what great teams do; they rose to the occasion and got the job done. So why shouldn't we feel the same feelings we felt in 2010? We have a very tough series against the defending Cup champs starting tomorrow, but I really feel this team can overcome any obstacle that gets in its way from here on out. I am not going to going all Hawk Harrelson and drop some TWTW bullcrap on you. But this Hawks team has the character and the skill to succeed. Does that mean they are just going to throw their sticks on the ice and beat the Kings? Absolutely not! But I have faith in them to overcome any adversity that comes their way from here on out.
--- Greg Boyson, Second City Hockey
Los Angeles Kings vs Chicago Blackhawks TV Schedule
|Saturday, June 1||4:00 p.m.||Chicago||NBC Sports Network, TSN, RDS|
|Sunday, June 2||7:00 p.m.||Chicago||NBC Sports Network, TSN, RDS|
|Tuesday, June 4||8:00 p.m.||Los Angeles||NBC Sports Network, TSN, RDS|
|Thursday, June 6||8:00 p.m.||Los Angeles||NBC Sports Network, CBC, RDS|
|Saturday, June 8||7:00 p.m.||Chicago||NBC, CBC, RDS|
|Monday, June 10||8:00 p.m.||Los Angeles||NBC Sports Network, CBC, RDS|
|Wednesday, June 12||TBD||Chicago||NBC Sports Network, CBC, RDS|
OTF Staff Picks
|Dirk||Chicago||This is so close it's hard to pick a winner, but I'll go with Chicago. They will be brimming with confidence after coming back from down 3-1 to Detroit.|
|Caroline||LA||I really don't want Chicago to win. I have this awful, sinking feeling that they will, but I'm going to go with LA anyway.|
|Jonathan||LA||The Blackhawks pulled out an impressive series win against the Wings, but they were the far better team and look how well Detroit threw them off their game. The Kings are built to do that as well, only better. The physical game wears on the Hawks, and Quick is oodles better than Crawford.|
|George||LA||The Blackhawks struggled against the Red Wings at times and in places they shouldn't have, and the Kings are a big team ... not to mention the defending champs. Los Angeles in 5.|
|Jason||Chicago||Home ice. Hawks in 6.|