By Tyler Ruby on June 4, 2014
The Los Angeles Kings are on the verge of winning the Stanley Cup for the second time in three years, and with their present roster, they have to be considered the favorites over the New York Rangers. From top to bottom, the Kings' roster is just better.
Read on to find out why the Kings will lift the most cherished trophy in all of sports... again.
The New York Rangers are fortunate to be in the Stanley Cup Final. They avoided the Boston Bruins and faced the Pittsburgh Penguins, Philadelphia Flyers and Montreal Canadiens, all of which had goalie issues. Los Angeles, on the other hand, went through a Western Conference gauntlet, facing three teams with more than 100 points. They certainly earned their spot in the Final.
Don't think for one second that Marian Gaborik hasn't been thinking about this matchup. He is the hottest goal-scorer in the playoffs right now, and he will be out to prove the New York Rangers wrong. With 12 goals this postseason, he has to be the frontrunner for the Conn Smythe trophy.
The Rangers' defensive corps will certainly be tested this series because the Kings will be the fastest team they have played all postseason. The line of Jeff Carter, Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson has been one of the top lines in the playoffs, as they have a combined 47 points. This isn't even mentioning to Drew Doughty, Dustin Brown or Anze Kopitar. Dan Girardi, Marc Staal and Ryan McDonagh will certainly be tested often.
They won two years ago, and they have a roster full of players who have won Olympic medals and have been captains or assistant captains on their previous teams. In a media day interview, head coach Darryl Sutter said that his team had difficulty adjusting to the media attention two years ago. With all of that previous experience, the Kings shouldn't have nearly the issue that New York will.
Jonathan Quick lines up opposite of arguably the world's best goalie in Henrik Lundqvist, but Quick isn't too far behind. He has proved in the past that he can win a series for a team, and he will have to better Lundqvist in this series. His numbers are a bit skewed considering he played three of the highest scoring teams in the NHL, so facing the Rangers should be a bit of a reprieve.
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