So what happened to the Devils? Sloppy play, that's how John Fischer at In Lou We Trust, SB Nation's Devils blog, described New Jersey's undoing on the ice last night.
The Kings were sloppy, the Devils were far sloppier, and the Devils lost Game 1 in overtime when their second big defensive breakdown resulted in Anze Kopitar getting a huge breakaway on Martin Brodeur.
Simply, this was a bad performance by the Devils. Martin Brodeur did what he could to keep it a game, but he can't score goals or have the Devils perform a successful breakout play. A win in overtime or in the third period on either of the open net opportunities would have been wonderful. Yet, it would have been a stolen victory. The Devils didn't deserve to win this one, and they didn't. Kopitar's game winning goal came from a grave defensive error; but the horrible puck movement and lack of offense doomed the Devils tonight. Peter DeBoer and his players will have plenty to look at and hopefully adjust over the next two days.
The Devils lost the opening game of the Eastern Conference Finals, against the Rangers, before coming back to win the series. Ditto their series against the Flyers. They'll have to go for the hat trick to win the Stanley Cup.
Robert P at Jewels from the Crown, SB Nation's Kings blog, noted something similar in LA's fortunate break in overtime.
It was anybody's game heading into overtime. The Kings' though, regrouped and were able to retake control. There were 25 shot attempts in the overtime and the Kings had 14 of them. One of those 14 being Anze Kopitar's beautiful forehand winner.
Game 2 is Saturday night at the Prudential Center in Newark.
SB Nation New York has a host of previews and analysis for your in our Stanley Cup Finals StoryStream. You can find more entertaining reading on the SB Nation NHL Hub Page. For the Devils perspective, check In Lou We Trust. For the Kings perspective, visit Jewels From The Crown.