The All-Postseason Team So Far in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs
The Stanley Cup Final will begin Wednesday, with the New York Rangers visiting the Los Angeles Kings for Game 1 at Staples Center.
But before that starts, it's time to look at this postseason's top players at each position.
The All-Stanley Cup playoff team is broken into three teams and features six Kings, four Blackhawks and four Rangers. There's one member of the first-team group that was eliminated in the second round.
So click on through and see who we picked as the top players through three rounds of the playoffs.
All-Playoff Third Team
Coach: Michel Therrien, Montreal Canadiens
Goaltender: Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
Left defenseman: Paul Martin, Pittsburgh Penguins
Right defenseman: Brent Seabrook, Chicago Blackhawks
Left wing: Tanner Pearson, Los Angeles Kings
Center: Jeff Carter, Los Angeles Kings
Right wing: Justin Williams, Los Angeles Kings
All-Playoff Second Team
Coach: Alain Vigneault, New York Rangers
Goaltender: Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins
Left defenseman: Duncan Keith, Chicago Blackhawks
Right defenseman: PK Subban, Montreal Canadiens
Left wing: Chris Kreider, New York Rangers
Center: Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks
Right wing: Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
1st-Team Coach: Darryl Sutter, Los Angeles Kings
Darryl Sutter's team has won three Game 7s in the postseason, all on the road.
If that's not great coaching, I don't know what is.
Not only are the Kings coming up big in Game 7s, but they are also overcoming deficits along the way. They were down 3-0 against the San Jose Sharks before winning four straight to take the series, then rallied from a 3-2 series deficit in the second round to beat the Anaheim Ducks.
In Game 7 against the Chicago Blackhawks, the Kings rallied from down 2-0 early and 4-3 in the third period to win 5-4 in overtime.
Quantifying the greatness of a coach isn't easy, but Sutter deserves credit for the Kings' resiliency.
1st-Team Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
With the way the goaltenders in the Western Conference have struggled, this one was a no-brainer.
Henrik Lundqvist leads all goaltenders in save percentage at .928, and his 2.03 goals-against average is tops among goaltenders who have played at least three rounds. When the Rangers fell behind the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-1, he won three straight elimination games, allowing one goal in each game.
Lundqvist has allowed two goals or fewer in 14 of his 20 postseason starts.
1st-Team Left Defenseman: Ryan McDonagh, New York Rangers
The 2013-14 regular season was somewhat of a coming-out party for Ryan McDonagh, and he's been even better during the 2014 playoffs.
Things started slow for McDonagh, who played Game 1 of the first round after missing the final two weeks of the regular season with a shoulder injury. But after an uneven, up-and-down performance through the first two rounds, McDonagh took command in the conference final against the Montreal Canadiens.
The 24-year-old had two goals and eight assists in six games against the Canadiens and played a tremendous defensive game in the series-deciding Game 6.
Only three defensemen have more points that McDonagh, and two of them are no longer playing in the postseason.
1st-Team Right Defenseman: Drew Doughty, Los Angeles Kings
Drew Doughty is very likely the Conn Smythe favorite entering the Final, no matter what the Kings do against the Rangers.
Doughty is first among defensemen and eighth overall in points with 16 (four goals), and he is logging 27:50 of ice time per game, most in the league among teams that advanced past the second round.
Doughty is a shutdown defenseman who is dynamic at even strength and on the power play. The scary part for the rest of the league is Doughty is still only 24 years old.
1st-Team Right Wing: Marian Gaborik, Los Angeles Kings
Marian Gaborik leads the league in goals with 12, and with the Kings in desperate need of a goal in Game 7 against the Chicago Blackhawks, he tied the game late in the third period.
With the Kings down a goal in the dying seconds of Game 1 against the Anaheim Ducks in the second round, Gaborik sent it to overtime, then won it in the extra session. He has three two-goal games in the postseason and has scored in three of his past four games entering the Stanley Cup Final.
This was a tight race between Gaborik and Patrick Kane, but Gaborik has been far more consistent in the playoffs.
1st-Team Left Wing: Zach Parise, Minnesota Wild
Zach Parise owning this spot says a lot about his play and the lack of strong postseason performances from left wings. But when the Minnesota Wild were alive in the playoffs, he was by far their best player.
He had 14 points in 13 games and scored his fair share of big goals. In Game 3 against the Chicago Blackhawks in the second round, Parise scored the dagger goal in the third period, putting his team ahead 3-0 in a 4-0 win.
In a truly desperate situation in the first round, Parise had two goals and two assists in Game 6 of the Wild's first-round series of the Colorado Avalanche. The second goal was the winner, as the Wild staved off elimination and went on to win the series in seven games.
Despite having been bounced during the second round, Parise is still second among left wings in scoring.
1st-Team Center: Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings
This spot came down to Anze Kopitar and Jonathan Toews, and it was a close call. Kopitar went seven games of the conference final without a goal, although he had five assists, making it tough to place him in this spot.
But this is an award for all three rounds, and Kopitar was just a little bit better than Toews.
Not only does Kopitar lead the league in points (24), but he was also excellent defensively against top competition and had huge performances in big games.
When the Kings won four straight to overcome a 3-0 deficit against the San Jose Sharks in the first round, Kopitar had four goals and two assists in those games, including the winner in Game 7. In the Kings' win in Game 7 against the Anaheim Ducks in the second round, he had a goal and an assist.
Now he's looking for his second Stanley Cup in three seasons.
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