GAME FIVE FINAL
L.A. KINGS 1
N.J. DEVILS 2
NEW JERSEY DEVILS: Headed Back to the City of Angels With Pitchforks Held High!
The fore-check, Zach Parise, and a power play goal all in one package. It didn't take two and a half periods this time. It took a little more than half of the first period to get on the board this time. The Devils had scored the all important first goal of the night. It was Zach Parise's first point of the Finals. And it was also New Jersey's first power play goal of the series after fifteen fruitless chances...., Finally.
But through the first period, L.A. continued to out shoot the Devils. Their shooting spilled over into the second period, and a little over three minutes in, the Kings' Justin Williams scored to tie the game at one.
The shots on goal favored the Kings twelve to six by the midway point of the period. But that mattered not to Bryce Salvador. He wristed one from up top, with David Clarkson in Jonathan Quick's way. That puck found net at the 9:05 mark to put the Devils back ahead again.
Mark Fayne probably had his named mentioned for the first time since playing the Rangers when he assisted on Salvador's goal, which by the way, were two more points for New Jersey's defensemen. But soon after scoring, Fayne then committed an ill-timed delay of game penalty. During the PK, Martin Brodeur was needed to stop a puck off Doughty's stick right at New Jersey's doorstep. Then a Kings' goal was dis-allowed due to a high stick. And luckily for Mark Fayne, a crisis narrowly avoided.
The Devils continued to carry play through the rest of the second period. At one point, Ryan Carter found himself with a nice opportunity and put a shot off Quick's mask. But just as New Jersey was exerting control, Bryce Salvador got called for a high stick, putting L.A. on the power play with less than two minutes to go. Martin Brodeur was excellent in holding off the Kings until the horn signaled the end of the second period.
The Kings out shot the Devils in the third period again. And for the game, they out-shot New Jersey by a 26-19 margin. Martin Brodeur made twenty-five saves on twenty-six shots, just as I said he would have to after Game Four:
"How much more can the renaissance men offer? Are they crafty enough to win three more games? Can Martin Brodeur hold back another seventy-five shots? That's what it will take. It's certainly another way of looking at things, isn't it?"Well, make that twenty-five saves down, and fifty more to go. Martin Brodeur has gotten the Devils half way to another Cup. The Kings might be a game closer to glory, but in the grand scheme of things, what is winning two consecutive games really about? We're not talking about four or three wins anymore. It just two now. And all you really have to worry about is the next one. For now, that's all that matters..., again.
The third Battle in Newark is done. This time Brick City prevailed. The Kings have been repelled. And the Devils are once again dancing around the fire with pitchforks held high.
Another battle in the City of Angels awaits.
SLAP SHOT: I have but one question. Can it be that Adam Larsson has no place in this series? Coach DeBoer has made him a healthy scratch for all five games during the finals. I realize he is a rookie. But I think he can help the Devils. Then again, it is hard to argue with New Jersey's defensive play so far, not to mantion, the continued defensive scoring should be complimented for producing points.