Newspaper article International New York Times

2nd Stanley Cup Win by Kings Defies Logic ; Los Angeles's Victory Comes during Era of Salary-Capped Parity

Newspaper article International New York Times

2nd Stanley Cup Win by Kings Defies Logic ; Los Angeles's Victory Comes during Era of Salary-Capped Parity

Article excerpt

The Kings defeated the New York Rangers in the Stanley Cup finals to lift the Cup for the second time in three years.

One team winning two Stanley Cups in three seasons during this salary-capped era of parity in the National Hockey League defies logic. But the Los Angeles Kings have never paid mind to the expectations of others.

The franchise, which entered the league in 1967, had never won a Stanley Cup and made one appearance in the finals until capturing its first championship in 2012. Friday, they defeated the New York Rangers, 3-2, in double overtime to again hoist the trophy.

"That's the result of our management keeping us together and us pulling together," the Kings' captain, Dustin Brown, said. "That's really hard to do with the cap, but we've found ways to have guys come up and play well, to add the core we have here."

In 2012, the Kings were the eighth seed, but they managed to finish three rounds in 14 games before defeating the New Jersey Devils in a six-game final. They led three games to none in each round of those playoffs. Most of the clinching game against the Devils was academic after Los Angeles broke it open with three first- period goals.

This season, they made the playoffs more comfortably but trailed by 3-0 in the first round and by 3-2 in the second before squandering a 3-1 lead to go to Game 7 in the Western Conference finals. They became the first team to win three Game 7s on the road in one playoff year. They then won a five-game series that featured five overtime periods, nearly accounting for seven games' worth of minutes. They won in double overtime Friday, with defenseman Alec Martinez ending the suspense of the longest game in franchise history.

"The second one was much harder, partly because of the way we did it and partly because we're not an unknown the way we were the first time," Brown said.

Brown, the longest tenured King, was one of many returners from 2012. Of the 20 skaters who dressed for the Kings on Friday, 18 were on the roster or in the organization in 2012. Left wing Tanner Pearson, passed over in two previous drafts, was selected that June, and left wing Marian Gaborik was acquired in March in a trade. …

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