NHL Picks: Kings at Devils Game 1 Odds and Betting Predictions

Are the suits at NBC upset that the New Jersey Devils knocked out the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference finals and prevented a Stanley Cup Finals between the L.A. Kings and Rangers in the two biggest media markets in this country? I guarantee you they are.

But pure hockey enthusiasts should be thrilled with this matchup because it’s the two highest-scoring teams in this year’s playoffs not from the state of Pennsylvania (and the Pens’ and Flyers’ scoring totals were inflated by that crazy first-round series).

It’s also possibly the final time NHL fans will get to see future Hall of Fame goaltender Martin Brodeur, although the 40-year-old sounds like he wants to play one more year. Brodeur is going for his fourth Stanley Cup, while the Kings are going for their first. The only time they reached the finals was in 1993 when they were led by some guy named Gretzky and a coach by the name of Barry Melrose. L.A. went down in five games that year to Montreal, which was the last Canadian (and Canadien, I suppose) team to bring the Cup back north of the border.

The Western Conference No. 8 seeded Kings and East No. 6 seeded Devils open in New Jersey on Wednesday night. 


Kings at Devils Betting Story Lines

It’s pretty surprising that both teams have gotten here, especially Los Angeles. The Kings canned Coach Terry Murray in mid-December and replaced him with Darryl Sutter. That move, and the big trade for Jeff Carter from Columbus at the deadline, made all the difference, even though L.A. still finished second-to-last in scoring during the regular season at 2.3 goals per game.

But behind goalie Jonathan Quick, the 11/10 Conn Smythe favorite at Bovada, the Kings were No. 2 in goals-against this season and have been practically invincible in the playoffs. They finished off the Coyotes 4-3 in overtime last Tuesday to improve to 12...

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