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Stanley Cup Finals Schedule 2012: LA Kings Will Take Control of Series Early

The only games the Los Angeles Kings have lost in the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs were at home. If recent trends continue, the Kings should have a 2-0 series lead heading back to California for Game 3. In all three series so far, Los Angeles started on the road, and in all three series, it has taken both games. The first- and third-round series wins were also secured on the road. In the regular season, the Kings had the 10th best away record in the league at 18-13-10. In the playoffs, that number has jumped to 8-0. As a No. 8 seed, the Kings would have to be good at playing away from home if they are to make a deep playoff run. However, the gap between No. 1 and No. 8 this year in both conferences was smaller than usual. Jesse Spector of the Sporting News pointed out: Considering that the Kings won only 17 of the 46 one-goal games that they played in the regular season, including overtime and shootout losses, and that Los Angeles lost the Pacific Division title to a Phoenix Coyotes team that closed the regular season with a five-game winning streak, it’s easy enough to see how small the difference was between the No. 3 seed in the West and the No. 8. Also, considering that both teams got hot at the start of the playoffs and have been playing their best hockey of the season, that gap gets even smaller. The Devils have played well at home, going 6-2 and winning some crucial games at the Prudential Center to keep the series from getting out of their control, including three series-tying wins and two in a row to open up a 3-1 lead over Philadelphia in the second round.Still, Los Angeles’ away play has driven the team to this point. If it is to continue its success, which it should, these first two Finals games are important. It’s not often that a team doesn’t want to have home-ice advantage, but this may be one of those years.  2012 Stanley Cup Finals Schedule Game 1 at New Jersey—Wednesday, May 30 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC/CBC. Game 2 at New Jersey—Saturday, June 2 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC/CBC. Game 3 at Los Angeles—Monday, June 4 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC Sports Network/CBC. Game 4 at Los Angeles—Wednesday, June 6 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC Sports Network/CBC. Game 5 at New Jersey (if necessary)—Saturday, June 9 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC/CBC. Game 6 at Los Angeles (if necessary)—Monday, June 11 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC/CBC. Game 7 at New Jersey (if necessary)—Wednesday, June 13 at 8 p.m. EDT—NBC/CBC.

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