05/30/12 04:19 AM
The National Hockey League's Stanley Cup Final series begins tonight. The best-of-seven game series will determine the league champions.
Representing the Western Conference are the Los Angeles Kings, who entered the playoffs with a losing record. However, they came on very strong in the playoffs. They are the first team to defeat the #1 and 2 seeds in a conference playoff run, and defeated the #3 seed for good measure. The Kings enter the final series with a 12-2 playoff record after beating Vancouver in five games, St. Louis in four games, and Phoenix in five games.
Representing the Eastern Conference are the New Jersey Devils. They were the sixth seed in the conference, despite racking up an impressive 102 points in the regular season. They are 12-6 in the playoffs after beating Florida in seven games, Philadelphia in five games, and the New York Rangers in six games.
Both teams will battle for the Stanley Cup, one of the most iconic trophies in sports. The Cup was first awarded in 1893. It has been given to the NHL champions since 1927. Once a small trophy, it has grown to almost three feet in height. The names of the winning players are engraved on the trophy for future generations to appreciate.