A little less than two years after battling for the services of high-scoring free agent forward Ilya Kovalchuk, the New Jersey Devils and Los Angeles Kings are going after a bigger prize - the Stanley Cup.
To tell the truth, hardly anyone picked the Devils and Kings to get this far. The odds were lottery like.
Led by Kovalchuk and a 40-year-old Martin Brodeur, the Devils are just the second No. 6 seed to reach the final. The 2004 Calgary Flames were the other.
Riding the goaltending of Jonathan Quick, the Kings overcame even bigger odds. They are only the second No. 8 seed to make it since the conference-based playoff format was introduced in 1993-94. The Edmonton Oilers were the first in 2006.
Game 1 is Wednesday night here.