Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/16/14 at 09:12 AM ET
INAUGURAL ‘FREEWAY FACE-OFF’ CONCLUDES WITH GAME 7
The first-ever playoff series between the Ducks and Kings reaches its pinnacle with Game 7 at Honda Center. The winner will advance to the Western Conference Final to face off against the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks.
The Ducks-Kings showdown will be the third Second Round series decided in a Game 7, joining both Eastern Conference matchups (Rangers defeated Penguins, Canadiens defeated Bruins). Since 1988, there only have been two other years when three or more second-round series required a Game 7: 2001 and 2009. Tonight’s contest also will mark the sixth Game 7 of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, one short of the single-year postseason record set in 1994 and equaled in 2011.
* Regardless of the winner, a California-based team is guaranteed to advance to the Western Conference Final for the ninth time in the past 11 seasons (Kings seeking third consecutive trip).
* The Ducks, 2-3 all-time in Game 7s (1-1 at home), will be the home team in such a contest for the second consecutive season and for the third time in franchise history. They dropped a 3-2 decision to the Red Wings in the 2013 Western Conference Quarterfinals.
* The Kings, 5-4 all-time in Game 7s (3-3 on the road), boast a 5-0 record in elimination games in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs. In addition to winning Game 6 of this series on Wednesday, they posted a 5-1 road victory over the Sharks in Game 7 of their First Round series to become the fourth team in Stanley Cup Playoffs history to overcome a 3-0 series deficit.
* Ducks forward Teemu Selanne has appeared in a team-leading five Game 7s (2-3), while defenseman Robyn Regehr tops the Kings with six appearances (3-3).
* Kings forwards Marian Gaborik, Mike Richards and Justin Williams all boast perfect 5-0 records in Game 7s, with Williams collecting 5-5—10 in his contests.
OTHER GAME 7 NOTES
* Home teams are 91-63 (.591) all-time in Game 7s in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but are just 1-4 in 2014.
* The team that scores first is 114-40 (.740) all-time in Game 7s, including a 3-2 mark in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
* Thirty-eight Game 7s have required overtime (38-of-154, 24.7%). Home and road teams both are 19-19 in those contests.
ALL-TIME TEAM STATISTICS IN GAME 7s
Anaheim Ducks (2-3)
5/12/13, Western Conference QF vs. Detroit (DET 3 at ANA 2)
5/14/09, Western Conference SF vs. Detroit (ANA 3 at DET 4)
5/3/06, Western Conference QF vs. Calgary (ANA 3 at CGY 0)
6/9/03, Stanley Cup Final vs. New Jersey (ANA 0 at NJ 3)
4/29/97, Western Conference QF vs. Phoenix (PHX 0 at ANA 3)
Los Angeles Kings (5-4)
4/30/14, Western Conference First Round vs. San Jose (LA 5 at SJ 1)
5/28/13, Western Conference SF vs. San Jose (SJ 1 at LA 2)
4/29/02, Western Conference QF vs. Colorado (LA 0 at COL 4)
5/9/01, Western Conference SF vs. Colorado (LA 1 at COL 5)
5/29/93, Western Conference Final vs. Toronto (LA 5 at TOR 4)
4/15/89, Smythe Division SF vs. Edmonton (EDM 3 at LA 6)
4/25/76, Quarterfinals vs. Boston (LA 0 at BOS 3)
4/13/69, Quarterfinals vs. Oakland (LA 5 at OAK 3)
4/18/68, Quarterfinals vs. Minnesota (MIN 9 at LA 4)
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
“There’s no reason to be nervous. We’ve laid it all on the line this year. We’ve come back from 2-0 in this series . . . To have one game to go to the Conference Finals is special; guys want to take advantage of it.” – Ducks forward Andrew Cogliano
“It’s the same thing with any other sport – it’s the last second of the game with the buzzer coming down, it’s the ninth inning, two outs, it’s a football game, fourth quarter, last play. It’s everything. It’s you or them. You really can’t prepare much for this. You just go out and trust your instincts and hopefully they bring you to success.” – Kings forward Justin Williams
“I think anytime you’re in a Game 7 it’s a little bit different and it’s obviously one of the biggest series [ever] in California. We’re looking forward to it and I think having it at home will be extra special.” – Ducks goaltender John Gibson
“It’s what it’s all about. Playing one game, win a series, win a championship, go on to the next round or whatever. When you have a best-of-seven or a best-of-five, that’s one thing, but when it comes down to one single game, that’s pretty exciting.” – Kings forward Jarret Stoll
“It’s all about just executing . . . We can’t be afraid to lose. We have to play hard. It’s all about poise, calming yourself down and play the game. It’s do or die.” – Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf
“When you’ve done special things together, you have the confidence no matter what happens to do that again. That’s a big thing in the playoffs. When you’re down in a game, down in the series, you’ve been through comebacks and good things with the guy beside you, it is a good thing to lean on. It’s a nice feeling to have that you have confidence in being able to do whatever is needed to win.” – Kings forward Mike Richards
WEDNESDAY’S GAMES CONTINUE RECORD RATINGS ON NBC SPORTS
* Wednesday’s Game 7 between the Canadiens and Bruins averaged 2.276 million viewers, making it the most-watched game featuring a Canadian team ever on NBCSN, excluding the Stanley Cup Final; the most-watched cable game of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs so far; and the third-most-watched second-round game ever on NBCSN.
* The contest peaked in its penultimate quarter-hour (9:30 – 9:45 p.m. ET) with 3.2 million viewers. In Boston, the game delivered a 22.3 household rating, making it the highest-rated second-round Bruins game ever in the market on NBCSN.
* Digitally, Game 7 between the Canadiens and Bruins broke nearly every record in the book as it was the best authentication-required NHL game ever, beating both authentication-required Stanley Cup Final games from last year.
* Regardless of authentication status, it also was the best second-round game ever and the best game of the 2013-14 season: it delivered 3.99 million minutes and 79,633 uniques.
* Wednesday’s Game 6 between the Ducks and Kings averaged 1.036 million viewers, making it the most-watched game of the series to date and up 22% vs. the comparable game last year (Kings-Sharks).
SNEAK PEEK AT FRIDAY’S ACTION
All Times Eastern
Los Angeles @ Anaheim, Game 7, series tied 3-3, 9:00 p.m., NBCSN, TSN, RDS
the above information was provide by the NHL PR department
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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