Nothing is more exciting than OT in the Stanley Cup Finals. Wednesday night’s Game 1 went into OT where Kings Anze Kopitar scored after performing a quick move to get around Brodeur. For most of Game 1, the game seemed tight as both teams were playing well. As in most Stanley Cup Finals, there weren’t a lot of huge plays for either team and the shots were limited as well. Both goaltenders played extremely well but I would expect nothing less in the Finals.
Game 1 is in the books and Game 2 here we come. First off, if the LA Kings win tonight, they’ll have won 10 straight road games in the playoffs which is a very impressive task. For the Kings to win both games in New Jersey and to then come home to play would be ideal for them. The only goal scored on Jonathan Quick in Game 1 was a bounce off the shoulder of a King player himself. While New Jersey did have a few chances that easily could’ve been goals, this was the goal that tied it up. Look for the Kings to come out flying as they want to be up 2-0 in the series putting them in the driver’s seat as they come home.
The New Jersey Devils are used to having to catch up in a series but as we all know, they can do it. They came back and won the 2 games with the Panthers to win the series. One game is big but it isn’t huge. For the Devils to win this game and make the series tied up would be big especially for them going away for 2 games. While neither team got a ton of shots on goal in Game 1, Brodeur proved age is just a number once again making some big, vintage Brodeur saves. We don’t see a whole lot of saves like this anymore but that’s Martin Brodeur for you!
Now that the Game 1 jitters are gone, both teams can focus on trying to set up good plays that can cause quality scoring opportunities, having players be in the right spots at the right times. In the Finals, you can’t count on that unlucky or lucky bounce, it needs to be quality chances. Both teams need to make sure they have their top player’s forechecking as we know there are a lot of dump-ins in the Finals. Playing physical is a must to cause turnovers. Make sure there are no silly, stupid penalties taken because they can be very costly.
Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals begins at 8pm and can be watched on NBC, CBC, RDS. Enjoy watching!