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Western Conference finals set: (3) Phoenix Coyotes vs. (8) Los Angeles Kings

May 8, 2012, 12:57 AM EDT

Los Angeles Kings v Phoenix Coyotes Getty Images

The Pacific Division didn’t do much for the hockey world during the regular season, but the supposedly lowly group will represent the West in the Stanley Cup finals this year. Now it’s down to which team will go as the third-seeded Phoenix Coyotes will face the West’s No. 8 team the Los Angeles Kings.

This represents the Coyotes’ first-ever trip to the conference finals on the heels of their first Pacific Division title and first series win since they won one as the Winnipeg Jets in 1987. (Sorry, but that always needs to be in bold.)

Meanwhile, the Kings are on their greatest run since the days of Wayne Gretzky, John Candy in the stands and the last gasps of the pre-Dead Puck Era.* Los Angeles was a regular season letdown if you consider many pundits’ picks, yet they’re looking like the contending team many expected – and more – after beating the top two teams in the West while losing just one playoff game.

The Coyotes and Kings took three games apiece in their six regular season contests. Both are red-hot. On paper, Los Angeles is sexier yet Phoenix has the possibly-important home ice edge. So who do you think is going to take it?

* – The Kings made it to the Stanley Cup finals in 1993. By ’95, the New Jersey Devils shocked the Detroit Red Wings and were subsequently blamed for the trap and whatever was wrong with the economy.

  1. barcthespark - May 8, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!!!!!!!

  2. oside760 - May 8, 2012 at 1:16 AM

    the coyotes players better start thinkin about which golf course they wanna play at first, cause this is the Kings year. GO KINGS!!!!!!!!!

  3. highlander24 - May 8, 2012 at 1:29 AM

    GO KINGS GO!!!!!!!!

  4. blomfeld - May 8, 2012 at 1:39 AM

    FALL IN FRIENDS !

    The high ground is now within our grasp and nothing, positively nothing, is going to prevent us from getting there and carrying the day ! So God bless to oside, highlander, baroomher, namriverrats and others … friends, we’re “going in” against these people and ain’t nothing gonna stop us now ! … GO KINGS GO ! :)

  5. tommytd - May 8, 2012 at 6:19 AM

    Good grief…what a money making machine this series will be for NBC! LOL

    • lostpuppysyndrome - May 8, 2012 at 9:30 AM

      NBC won’t care. They have all northeast teams to show on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

    • ron05342 - May 8, 2012 at 10:33 AM

      Typical statement from some ignorant east coast fan. The Kings have been in the league 45 years, have a huge following across the country (I am told the world, so I throw that in here), and is still the 2nd largest city in the country. Also, the 2nd largest TV market in the country.

      So I don’t think you need to worry much about NBC’s profit line.

      • supercoop8 - May 8, 2012 at 11:12 AM

        It seems like the people that are dismissive of this series are bitter about their own team’s early departure. Im not a fan of either team but this series has the capability of being incredibly entertaining.
        Props to that guy for a Barry Lyndon reference I forgot that movie existed.

  6. arizonahomer - May 8, 2012 at 10:58 AM

    Coyotes!!!!!!! This is gonna be a series! Two on fire goalies with quality defenses in front of them. Los Angeles is playing outside their minds and just steamrolling right now. Should be intense! The Yotes have their hands full for sure. But the Predators were suppose to dismantle us in 5 so we’ll see. Bring the attention of the hockey nation to the west coast and let’s pick it up.

  7. Christian Bullock - May 8, 2012 at 11:05 AM

    Kings look unstoppable… But the Coyotes are playing great hockey. Should be a fun series!

  8. namriverrat69 - May 8, 2012 at 11:09 AM

    Good job Phoenix. I thought it would come to this. You have a top goalie in Mike Smith who is hot. As hot and good as he is Jonathan is Quicker. And we have top notch Bernier as a back up if needed. Both teams are red hot but the teams the Kings beat were better. The coyotes could push the Kings to 7 games before going home for the summer.

    GO KINGS!!

    By the way, who cares about NBC? If the east coast fans don’t want to watch, that is their loss. I enjoy a good hockey game regardless of who is playing. GO KINGS!!

  9. tarotsujimoto74 - May 8, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    I hope the Kings rock them.

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