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2012 stanley cup finals

The Devils Stave Off Elimination

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 06:  Adam Henrique #14 of the New Jersey Devils scores a goal over goaltender Jonathan Quick #32 of the Los Angeles Kings in the third period of Game Four of the 2012 Stanley Cup Final at Staples Center on June 6, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images) Adam Henrique scores the game-winning goal in Game 4.

Give the Devils credit: After an ugly loss in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final — a game that gave the Kings a commanding 3-0 series lead — they bounced back with a 3-1 win in a tight Game 4 last night to keep their season alive. The Devils can take some positives back to Newark with them: Three of the four games have been close — two went to overtime, and as Kings coach Darryl Sutter put it last night, Game 4 was basically a next-goal-wins contest late in the third period — and so, perhaps the Kings' dominant Game 4 was an anomaly. The Devils have a fighting chance in any individual game if the score is close; they don't if Los Angeles controls the game like they did on Monday night. They scored two goals on Jonathan Quick last night, and the way he's been playing, that's quite an accomplishment. (Is it too early in Adam Henrique's career to label him as a clutch player? Probably not, right?) And the Devils now get to play again on their home ice with an opportunity to cut the Kings' lead to one game. Of course, this Kings team is a perfect 10-0 on the road so far in these playoffs, and though they've had a bit of trouble trying to put teams away — they're 3-3 with a chance to close out a series — none of their first three series lasted longer than five games. Game 5 is Saturday night in Newark. The Stanley Cup will be in the house, once again.

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Photo: Jeff Gross/Getty Images