Kings know the path to eter­nal glory will most likely pass through Chicago

The Hockey News - Rivalries 2014 - - Team Vs. Team -

IT’S AL­WAYS A BIG DEAL when the Kings bat­tle the Ana­heim Ducks or San Jose Sharks in a Cal­i­for­nia en­counter, but one matchup has sur­passed that the past cou­ple sea­sons. It is the de facto, tongue-in-cheek, Stan­ley Cup fi­nal be­tween Los An­ge­les and the Chicago Black­hawks in back-to-back years.

Chicago won the Western Con­fer­ence fi­nal in five games in 2013, then dis­patched Bos­ton to win the Cup. Last sea­son, the Kings re­sponded with an ex­cit­ing and dra­matic seven-game con­fer­ence fi­nal tri­umph. D-man Alec Martinez scored the se­ries win­ner in over­time of the de­cid­ing game. Los An­ge­les then beat the New York Rangers in the real Cup fi­nal.

Los An­ge­les and Chicago have now won four of the past five Stan­ley Cups, with only Bos­ton get­ting in the mid­dle of that run. So will this Illi­nois-Cal­i­for­nia ri­valry con­tinue in the pow­er­ful west? Con­sider that for the Kings or Hawks to achieve a dy­nasty la­bel by to­day’s def­i­ni­tion, they’ll need another Cup.

The two teams meet Nov. 29, Jan. 28 and March 30.

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