2012 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFSNo. 6 NEW JERSEY DEVILS
at No. 8 LOS ANGELES KINGS
Stanley Cup Finals
Game 6 - Los Angeles leads series 3-2
Puck Drops: Monday, 8:20 p.m. ET
Line: Los Angeles -170, New Jersey +150, Total: 4˝
New Jersey has already staved off elimination twice in the Stanley Cup Finals, but to keep the season alive, it will have to win in Los Angeles again in Monday’s Game 6.
Once on the verge of getting swept, the Devils are now just two wins away from completing a stunning comeback from a 3-0 series deficit. After getting blown out 4-0 in Game 3, they have allowed just two goals in the past two victories, winning 3-1 in Game 4 and 2-1 in Saturday’s Game 5 at home. New Jersey may have been unlucky with two home overtime losses in Games 1-2, but its luck appeared to change on Saturday with two goals on just 19 shots. One was courtesy of a Jonathan Quick clearing mistake, and the other was a deflected shot off Kings defenseman Slava Voynov. The Devils, who had just four shots in the first period and three shots in the third stanza in Game 5, will need to create more scoring chances to stay alive in this series. Los Angeles had some great opportunities among their 26 shots, but got only one puck past 40-year-old Martin Brodeur, who now has 46 saves in 48 chances in the past two games. Although New Jersey has all the momentum and is getting 3-to-2 odds to tie up the series, the Kings are still the better team. After all, they are 15-4 in the postseason, while the Devils are just 14-9. L.A. is also an outstanding 12-5 in its past 17 home games. Expect Kings star RW Dustin Brown (one point, zero goals in series) to finally make some noise in the Finals and lead his LOS ANGELES team to its first Stanley Cup in franchise history on Monday.
This two-star FoxSheets trend also likes the Kings to win:
LOS ANGELES is 15-5 ATS (75.0%, +9.1 Units) against good power-play killing teams – opp. score on <14.5% of chances in the 2nd half of the year this season. The average score was LOS ANGELES 2.7, OPPONENT 1.6 - (Rating = 2*).
And this three-star FoxSheets trend expects the UNDER to occur for the sixth straight time this series:
LOS ANGELES is 31-13 UNDER (70.5%, +15.7 Units) when playing only their 2nd game in 5 days this season. The average score was LOS ANGELES 2.4, OPPONENT 2.0 - (Rating = 3*).
On Saturday, the Devils finally scored on the power play this series, breaking an 0-for-15 drought when LW Zach Parise intercepted Quick’s terrible clear behind his net and quickly put it in the empty net before Quick could return between the pipes. This was Parise’s first point of the series after tallying 14 points (7 G, 7 A) in the first three rounds of the 2012 playoffs. LW Ilya Kovalchuk has also been quiet this series with just one point, courtesy of an empty-net goal. Speculation is that Kovalchuk’s back that kept him out of a game in the second round has been bothering him this series as well. The only Devils player with more than two points this series is defenseman Bryce Salavdor, who has one goal and two assists. New Jersey has been a tough road team this season at 31-22, which includes winning five of its past seven road games.
Although Quick has made a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes in his past two games, he has still saved 108-of-114 shots (.947 SV Pct.) in the Cup Finals series. He has allowed two goals or less in 17 of his 19 games this postseason, sporting an impressive 1.12 GAA. Los Angeles has been a much more complete offense than New Jersey this series with four players tallying multiple goals. Although Brown has just one assist and no goals in the series, his linemates Justin Williams and Anze Kopitar have tallied four points apiece (2 G, 2 A). Standout defenseman Drew Doughty (4 points, 26:37 average ice time) and C Jeff Carter are the other players with two goals this series. L.A. had only two power-play chances in Saturday’s loss, but is still 3-for-8 with the man up in the past three games following an 0-for-18 power play drought.