Sunday night, the Los Angeles Kings made history. For the first time ever, an eighth-seeded club defeated both the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in its conference.
The Kings have turned themselves around from a team that barely made the playoffs to a favorite to win the Cup. So far in this year's postseason, they have played better hockey than they had all season.
Their All-Star goalie, Jonathan Quick, has one shutout and currently has a .949 save percentage. He allowed only eight goals in the series with Vancouver and six against St. Louis, doing his part to help lead the Kings to the Western Conference Finals.
However, their victories have not all rested on Quick.
Dustin Brown leads the team with six goals and 11 points. There are five other players who have more than one goal for L.A., including Anze Kopitar with three and Justin Williams with two.
There has only been one other team that entered the playoffs in eighth place in their conference and made it to the Stanley Cup Finals; the Edmonton Oilers did it during the 2005-06 postseason, before losing to the Hurricanes in seven games.
Before the league had enough teams to have an eighth seed in each conference, there were only two teams that entered the playoffs with the worst record and went on to win it all—the 1948-49 Maple Leafs and the 1937-38 Chicago Blackhawks.
Neither would preform as this year's Kings have. Even Edmonton, a team that went further in the postseason than any other eighth seed, would beat the No. 5 Sharks and No. 6 Ducks before making it to the Stanley Cup Finals.
The Kings are looking to solidify their spot in the record books, as they advance to the Western Conference Finals for only the second time in club history. If they're fortunate enough to advance to the championship and win, it will cement the L.A. Kings as a team that achieved the impossible.
It would be the Kings' first Stanley Cup since they entered the league with the five other expansion teams in 1967.
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