Jun 5, 2012, 1:46 PM EDT
The Los Angeles Kings are one victory away from their first Stanley Cup in franchise history. For hardcore fans of the club that’s been around since 1967, it hasn’t been easy keeping the faith. Below is a list of reasons why.
—- Out of their previous 43 season, Los Angeles missed the playoffs 18 times and lost in the first round 16 times.
—- Only three times have the Kings broken the 100-point barrier in a season. And in two of those seasons they lost in the first round, the other in the second round.
—- The Kings have just two banners hanging in the Staples Center, one for winning the Smythe Division in 1991 and one for winning the Campbell Conference in 1993, the year they lost in the finals to Montreal.
—- In the 18 seasons since making it to the finals, they’ve missed the playoffs 11 times.
—- In 1995, the Kings had to claim bankruptcy as a result of former owner Bruce McNall’s financial misdeeds. McNall ultimately went to prison for almost five years after pleading guilty to five counts of conspiracy and fraud.
—- In 1996, the Kings were forced to trade Wayne Gretzky to St. Louis at his behest. In return, they got Craig Johnson, Patrice Tardif, Roman Vopat, a first-round pick in the 1997 draft (Matt Zultek) and a fifth-round choice in the 1996 draft (Peter Hogan). Remember any of those guys?
- Devils’ Gomez considered retirement 4
- It’s New Jersey Devils day on PHT 11
- Fanspeak: Bobby Orr named best Bruin in franchise history 25
- Video: Bruins participate in commercials to promote NHL 15 6
- Oilers ink Schultz to one-year deal 2
- It’s Boston Bruins day on PHT 41
- Fanspeak: Dominik Hasek voted greatest Sabre in franchise history 35
- Is Colorado’s rise a fair example of what might happen in Buffalo? 7
- It’s Buffalo Sabres day on PHT 19
- Gomez goes full circle by rejoining Devils on tryout basis 13