It is proving to be a taut competition, changing by the game, shifting momentum and all that you come to expect at the highest level of sport.
Things have a way of turning in a playoff series — just ask the
A highly informal survey at this point in the series has Kings defenseman
Williams has eight goals, 24 points and leads the league with a plus-14 rating in the playoffs.
It says something about the depth of the Kings that the league's leading scorer in the playoffs,
Clearly, Kopitar and his 26 points and center
The award is voted on by a selected panel of Professional Hockey Writers Assn. members. There are 11 voters, three from the Los Angeles chapter, three from New York and five at large. Times reporters are not permitted to vote, per newspaper policy.
"That's an award that a lot of NHLers obviously aspire to have," Williams said Tuesday, sitting with Doughty at
"To be even mentioned with these big guys in that conversation is awesome. But, hey, the big one is what matters. Yeah, I want to taste it again."
"Good question. Just trying to think of guys I played with and then guys I coached," Sutter said. "I'd probably have to think about it because there's not one guy that jumps out as the very same. Unique. I'll come up with one, but too much going on there. I'll get you a good one."
Only five defensemen have won the Conn Smythe in the last 30 years — Al MacInnis of Calgary (1989), Brian Leetch of the Rangers (1994), Scott Stevens of the Devils (2000),
Doughty, who potentially could win a second Stanley Cup title to go with two Olympic gold medals before turning 25, has been the Kings' engine. He played 41-plus minutes in their double-overtime victory in Game 2 against the Rangers. His goal in Game 1 was of highlight-reel quality and then there is his off-the-charts hockey IQ.
He saved an almost certain goal by
"I think that play in particular, [Rick] Nash a very forceful player for them the last two games, and you're going to have to match his skill set to make a play like that," Sutter said. "Nash is a special player, and so is Drew Doughty. You're talking about two guys that made special plays there."