When it comes to grabbing the Southland hockey fans' attention, the
The Kings have won two of the last three Stanley Cups, while the Ducks haven't been able to expand their brand much outside of Orange County.
Now, with the Kings not in the playoffs, is their chance.
Fueled by consecutive postseason disappointments and reloaded by players with an edge, the top-seeded Ducks open the
"It's good for California hockey to have a team in [the playoffs]," Ducks forward
The Ducks, after finishing 51-24-7 in the regular season, have kept their home crowds on edge by rallying from third-period deficits to win an
"We know they're a different team now, that their goalie [
The Ducks won all three regular-season games against the Jets, with two in Winnipeg, but as they got a glimpse last season in Selanne's final game in the city where his NHL career began, the Jets' fan base is passionate.
Not only did Winnipeg fans buy up all available playoff tickets in five minutes, they plan to stage a white-out by wearing all-white clothing for Game 3 on Monday in what will be the city's first playoff game since 1996.
"If you're a hockey player who wants to do well, you embrace it," Ducks defenseman
The Jets (43-26-13) clinched the final wild-card playoff spot by giving up only one goal in the final four games and weathering a suspension to
"They're quick, big and worked hard to get into the playoffs," Perry said. "There's a fine line you can't cross. We're physical and big too, so it'll be the team that can be the most disciplined … special teams could be a big factor."
The Jets might be willing to take more liberties considering the Ducks enter the playoffs mired in a one-for-23 rut on the power play, but Anaheim center
The Ducks are hopeful they can revert to their late-season focus on defense, when they won eight of 10 games by yielding two goals or fewer in each of the victories, then closed out the regular season Saturday with a 2-1 triumph at Arizona.
"We're going to [need] a strong board game and win those battles," Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf said.
The Ducks' trade-deadline acquisitions —
"All eyes in California will be on us," Boudreau said. "If we're good, that's good."