State of Elation – LA Kings Club Chicago – Head to Finals

by Tony Shea on June 2, 2014

in COLUMNS, SPORTS

Post image for State of Elation – LA Kings Club Chicago – Head to Finals

The Los Angeles Kings defeated their west coast rivals, the Chicago Blackhawks, last night in a 5-4 overtime victory, taking their second trip in the last three years to the Stanley Cup Finals, where they will face off against the New York Rangers Wednesday night. The crowd inside The Hollywood( my pick for the best bar in Burbank or NoHo to catch a Kings game) went absolutely berserk with the thrill of victory and the joy of relief.

The game, and in truth the entire series against Chicago, was one for the ages, with two high powered teams with outstanding goalies locked in a furious back and forth that amounted to an almost never ending series of rushes. Chicago won the Cup last year, of course, and were looking to repeat. But in a reversal of last’s year’s Western Conference Championship, the Kings got the win, scoring in overtime on a deflection that flopped our Corey Crawford’s shoulder, bringing an intense game to a final end.

IMG_1516

Earlier in the series, the Kings seemed to have everything firmly in glove, leading 3 games to 1, having stolen a game in Chicago where the Blackhawks have been nearly invincible over the last three seasons. But then the Kings failed to capitalize in OT during the game 5, and gave away a third period lead to lose game 6 at home, leaving the series tied at 3 games a piece. But as I have said before when the Kings faced down the San Jose Sharks and the Anaheim Ducks it’s almost as if the Kings can’t win unless they fall behind – this, their heroic journey.

Along the way to the Stanley Cup finals, the Kings set several records. For starters, in beating San Jose, the Kings became only the 5th NHL team to win a 7 game series after falling behind 3 games to 0. In beating Chicago, the Kings became the 1st team to win three game 7’s on their way to the finals. The Kings have done the hardest things they can do – harder perhaps than even winning the Cup again for the second time, which I predict they will in 6 games. The Rangers haven’t gone all the way since 1994, so I expect that the series will be a good one, but really the West Coast is the best coast, at least when it comes to hockey. The Kings have demonstrated relentless persistence and I look for that trend to continue when these two mega-markets meet.

Whatever happens, let me say this, after twenty years of being a Washington Capitals fan (dark times) and another fifteen years as Kings fan, the last three years have been the best hockey years of my life. The Kings have crafted a mini-dynasty, winning the Stanley cup in 2012, going to the conference finals last year, and now triumphantly returning to the ultimate series of the longest playoffs in sports. If the series goes another 7 games, the Kings will have played 28 games before final victory. That is a long march for sure.

However many games are played in this series, I will not be here in Los Angeles to see them. I am scooting out the door to move to New York and the fact that these two great cities are facing off for my soul is not lost on me. It seems ridiculously great – like some kind of hockey supernova – I can’t lose. But just so you know, when the last games of the final series is played, I will find a new sports bar, quietly watch the satellite feed, and be rooting for glorious LA – one last kiss, and then we say goodbye.

**You should follow Shea Magazine on Twitter HERE!**

Tony Shea ( Editor-in-Chief, New York)

Tony Shea is based in New York, having recently moved from Los Angeles after more than a decade on the sunny coast. His short films have won numerous awards and screened at major festivals around the world including Comic-Con. As a musician, he is the lead singer for Los Angeles rock n’ roll band Candygram For Mongo (C4M) candygramformongo.com who has been a featured artist on Clear Channel Radio’s Discover New Music Program and whose songs have been heard on Battlestar Gallactica (Syfy Channel) and Unhitched (Fox) among other shows and films.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

(Spamcheck Enabled)

Previous post:

Next post: