LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 06: Patrik Elias #26 of the New Jersey Devils celebrates his third period goal over goaltender Jonathan Quick #32 of the Los Angeles Kings in Game Four of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final at Staples Center on June 6, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Devils' Delight: New Jersey Takes Game 4, Avoids Sweep

With a 3-1 win on Wednesday night, the Devils avoided a sweep and will head back to Jersey for Game 5. More: Game 1 coverage | Game 2 | Game 3 | Devils blog | Kings blog

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Adam Henrique Continues Clutch Stanley Cup Playoffs Performance

Just about all of the hockey world was prepared for the Kings' Stanley Cup celebration to begin Wednesday night, but rookie Adam Henrique continued the trend of scoring when his team needs it the most.


Stanley Cup Finals, Game 5: Simon Gagne's Resurgence Excites Kings Fans

The Los Angeles Kings may not be celebrating a Stanley Cup just yet, but even after their 3-1 loss at the hands of the New Jersey Devils in Game 4, there's still plenty for Los Angeles to be excited about.

The play of their fourth line in Game 4 was phenomenal, and although it may have taken a game for him to get going after returning from injury, Simon Gagne had a great game that should earn him a greater role come Game 5 on Saturday night. Via Kings blog Jewels From The Crown:

There were many positives in this game if you're the Kings, the most exciting of which is the resurrection of Simon Gagne. Gagne was a force in this one and looked closer to being back to his old self. Look for him to remain in the lineup in New Jersey and possibly seeing a bump in playing time. Another positive is that they once again were able to dominate possession. If they keep throwing this type of game out there, it is going to be extremely hard for the Devils to get back in this series.

Stick with SB Nation's dedicated NHL hub for full Stanley Cup finals coverage. For more on the New Jersey Devils, check out Devils blog In Lou We Trust. For more on the Los Angeles Kings, check out Jewels From The Crown and SB Nation Los Angeles.


Dream Deferred: Los Angeles Kings Must Wait For The Stanley Cup

Should Kings fans be worried now that they've finally lost and face another potential nail-biter on New Jersey's home ice? Yes and no. But mostly no.


Stanley Cup Finals 2012: New Jersey Devils Stave Off Elimination, Force Game 5

The Los Angeles Kings have taken 3-0 leads in all four series they've played in these 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but they've swept only one series. Maybe it's weakness with it all on the line in front of the home crowd in Game 4, or maybe it's the will of the opposing team, but it's the same deal in these Stanley Cup Finals.

Adam Henrique's beautiful top-shelf shot was the game-winner, helped along by Patrik Elias' goal at the 7:56 mark of the third period and Ilya Kovalchuk's empty-net tally in the final minute of the game as the Devils won, 3-1.

Just 1:03 after Elias opened the scoring, Drew Doughty scored a power play goal to even the score. It really seemed at that point like it may have been L.A.'s night as they yet again got another break, but Martin Brodeur continued another great game and the Kings missed several scoring chances down the stretch with which they could've closed this thing out.

As a result, we're headed back to New Jersey for another do-or-die game Saturday night. The Kings haven't played beyond a Game 5 all playoffs long. Will they head back to Los Angeles on Sunday with hangovers or with a Game 6 in front of them?


Adam Henrique Breaks Tie, Devils Lead 2-1 Late In 3rd

Adam Henrique has been clutch for the Devils all playoffs long. He's ended two series with overtime goals, and late in the third period of a do-or-die Game 4, a beautiful shot over the shoulder of Jonathan Quick has broken a 1-1 tie.

The play was made by David Clarkson. He did a great job of staying onside and evading the Kings defenseman at the blueline, and the great vision to find Henrique across the ice was followed by a pinpoint pass. There wasn't much Los Angeles could have done about this one, especially once the puck got down low on Henrique's stick.

Jonathan Quick is human if you're able to get these sorts of chances, you know.


Kings, Devils Trade Goals 1 Minute Apart In 3rd Period

The Devils haven't had a bounce go their way seemingly all series, but 7:56 into the third period of a do-or-die Game 4, there she is.

A rebound popped out onto Patrik Elias' stick, and yeah, Jonathan Quick was bumped a little bit, but nevertheless, Elias was right there for the rebound. He's had a rough playoffs thus far, but what a time for the big goal.

Unfortunately for the Devils, though, the lead was short-lived. Just one minute after the Elias goal, following a questionable call that went against Devils forward David Clarkson, Drew Doughty flipped one through traffic that beat Martin Brodeur through the five-hole.

Kings fans can complain about the potential goaltender interference on the Elias goal. Devils fans can complain about the weak boarding call against Clarkson. At the end of it all, we're right back where we started: All tied up with less than 10 minutes to go in Game 4.


Drew Doughty: Show Off

Drew Doughty has had an amazing playoff run and an amazing Finals. In this potential clincher, it's apparent he's really just showing off at this point:



Staples Center Horn Guy Gets A Little Excited

A wee bit trigger happy at Staples Center, it seems. This puck definitely didn't go in the net, but that pretty red light still came on and gave Martin Brodeur a little bit of a spotlight shower -- as an aside, that seems like it could be distracting when the puck is still in play, no? -- and the horn still went off momentarily.


Definitely off the glove-side post. Not that we can blame the horn guy/light guy/whoever for being a bit excited tonight. It's not like the Kings have been waiting 45 years for this or anything.

Still 0-0 after 20 minutes of play, by the way.


Radio Host Suggests Devils Take 'Major Run' At Jonathan Quick

Listen, Jonathan Quick is really good at hockey. He's the reason the Kings are in the playoffs. He's a big part of the reason the Kings have gone up 3-0 in every single series this postseason, and he's a major reason the Devils face elimination tonight while Los Angeles prepares for celebration.

In a lot of ways, an injury to Quick might be the only way the Devils actually have a chance at winning one game in these finals, let alone four straight. But ... no, man.



Zach Parise Penalty Isn't The Start New Jersey Wanted

Welp, that's not the start the Devils wanted. Just when it looked as though they could generate some offensive pressure with an early offensive zone faceoff, a turnover off that draw and a penalty taken on the ensuing rush the other way put them down a man.

It was an easy call for the ref here on Devils captain Zach Parise:


The Kings went 2-for-2 on the power play in Game 3, but the Devils were able to kill this one off thanks to a solid glove save by Martin Brodeur.


New Jersey Devils To Make Several Lineup Changes For Stanley Cup Finals Game 4

With their backs against the wall in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, the New Jersey Devils will make a number of lineup changes in what could be the last game of the 2011-12 NHL season.

Head coach Pete DeBoer confirmed that forward Petr Sykora would return to the lineup in Game 4 and that defenseman Henrik Tallinder, who looks like Dr. House, would return as well. Sykora has been a healthy scratch since Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the New York Rangers while Tallinder has been out since mid-January with a blood clot.

Peter Harrold will come out of the lineup on defense while Jacob Josefson will sit for Sykora. Tallinder believes his experience will help him come back from the injury quickly.

"I've had my fair share of injuries in coming back, Tallinder said. "Not in the playoffs, but during regular season. I mean, that's how I have to approach this game, just like I've approached other games I've been coming back, or other injuries I'm coming back from. I just have to go through with my experience."

Stick with SB Nation's dedicated NHL hub for full Stanley Cup finals coverage. For more on the New Jersey Devils, check out Devils blog In Lou We Trust. For more on the Los Angeles Kings, check out Jewels From The Crown and SB Nation Los Angeles.


Stanley Cup Finals 2012: A Guide To Beating Jonathan Quick

The Devils need to find ways to get pucks past Jonathan Quick if they hope to survive Game 4. We suggest a few ways the potential Conn Smythe winner could be broken down by looking at his play from earlier in the postseason.


How To Build A Better Bandwagon: Are The Kings Too Good For L.A. To Latch On?

The Kings easy run of things in the 2012 playoffs hasn't given casual hockey fans in Los Angeles the chance to latch on to the bandwagon.

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