Newspaper article International Herald Tribune

After 45 Years, They're Finally Kings of the N.H.L. ; Los Angeles Knocks off New Jersey and Hoists Stanley Cup for First Time

Newspaper article International Herald Tribune

After 45 Years, They're Finally Kings of the N.H.L. ; Los Angeles Knocks off New Jersey and Hoists Stanley Cup for First Time

Article excerpt

The Kings beat the New Jersey Devils, 6-1, in Game 6 of the N.H.L. finals.

After 62 days of playoff domination, spearheaded by sensational goaltending, the Los Angeles Kings completed their improbable Stanley Cup run in a mere five minutes.

The pivotal moment Monday night came at 10 minutes, 10 seconds of a scoreless first period when the New Jersey Devils' Steve Bernier smashed Kings defenseman Rob Scuderi into the end boards from behind, bloodying Scuderi's face. Bernier was ejected with a boarding major, and during the five-minute power play the Kings scored three goals -- by Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter and Trevor Lewis.

"I was in the dressing room getting checked, so I didn't see the goals, but I heard the crowd after each one," Scuderi said, fresh stitches on his upper lip and the bridge of his nose. "I thank all the guys for making the most of that power play."

After the superb Jonathan Quick made one final pad save with 12 seconds left and the clock ran down, the Kings piled into one another at the corner of the rink -- a bearded, black-sweatered mass of joyous humanity.

They had finally closed out the stubborn Devils in Game 6 with a 6-1 victory. Their fans inside the Staples Center -- Beverly Hills bandwagon jumpers and longtime faithful followers -- were delirious in celebrating the first Stanley Cup of the Kings' 45-year existence in the National Hockey League.

Moments later Brown, the second American-born captain to win the Cup (Dallas's Derian Hatcher was the first in 1999), lifted Lord Stanley's venerable goblet over his head in triumph.

The Kings lost their first two attempts to clinch, at home and in Newark, New Jersey, after taking a 3-0 lead in the series. The third time was the charm for Kings, who became the first eighth-seeded team to win the Cup.

"I can't believe this is happening," said defenseman Drew Doughty, looking around at the crowd.

The Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded to the most valuable player of the postseason, went to Quick, who did not allow more than three goals in any of the Kings' 20 postseason games. His goals-against average was 1. …

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