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Win Or Go Home For Hawks, Kings

The Los Angeles Kings and Chicago Blackhawks will make one last bid to earn a Western Conference championship as the two sides meet in Chicago on Sunday night.

The Los Angeles Kings and Chicago Blackhawks will make one last bid to earn a Western Conference championship as the two sides meet in Chicago on Sunday night.

In a postseason that’s already seen six series go the distance, it wouldn’t have been right to watch the conference finals without being treated to a Game 7. Cue a wild series between the Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings.

The two sides will contest Game 7 in the Windy City on Sunday night, finally deciding which team will represent the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Opening face-off at the United Center in Chicago on Sunday is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. ET.

After falling to a seemingly insurmountable 3-1 deficit, Chicago has fought its way back into contention, most recently completing a 4-3 victory in Los Angeles on Friday night.

Patrick Kane was the star of the show for the Hawks in Game 6, scoring a pair of goals and recording an assist on Duncan Keith’s scoring effort.

Joel Quenneville’s side found itself trailing 1-0 in the first period before Kane and Ben Smith gave the Hawks a 2-1 lead in the second. Los Angeles responded with third period goals from Drew Doughty and Alec Martinez, once more giving Chicago an obstacle to traverse.

Keith’s goal midway through the period knotted the game at 3-3 before Kane put the winner past Jonathan Quick with less than four minutes to play.

Now the Blackhawks return home with an opportunity to secure a second consecutive finals berth and the chance to win a third Stanley Cup in five years.

Meanwhile, Los Angeles – facing its third Game 7 of the postseason – will look to do what it’s been unable to achieve twice in the last five nights; rid itself of Chicago.

Despite having been unable to put the Blackhawks away, the Kings will remain confident as they head into a hostile United Center. Darryl Sutter’s side is 6-0 in elimination games this postseason, as earlier series against the San Jose Sharks and Anaheim Ducks went the distance.

Dating back to last season’s playoffs, the Kings have also their last three Game 7s. Since the franchise joined the NHL in 1967, the team ins 6-4 all-time in Game 7, and 8-5 in series finales (in the past the NHL feature best-of-three and best-of-five series).

Chicago is no slouch when it comes to Game 7 success though. The Blackhawks have won four of their last five Game 7s, dating back to 1990. Since 1927, the team has gone 6-5 in Game 7 and 10-8 in series finales. They’ve also won nine of their last 11 elimination games.

In what has been one of the most fascinating series in an overall fascinating postseason, Sunday night’s game has all the makings of becoming an instant classic. The Kings have never beaten the Hawks in the postseason. Will that change or will the team from the Windy City continue its dynasty-like run?


Los Angeles Kings vs. Chicago Blackhawks odds for 06/01/2014

Playing at home, Chicago (-150) opened as the favorite over Los Angeles (+136) on the moneyline.

The Blackhawks are 12-1 in their last 13 home games, but that one loss came against the Kings in Game 2 of this series. The Kings have won six of their last nine on the road.

The Blackhawks have won seven of their last eight against the Kings in Chicago. In nine postseason games between the two sides all-time at Chicago, the Blackhawks are 8-1.

The over/under opened at 5.

Both Chicago (11-5-2) and Los Angeles (12-6-2) have favored the over this postseason, a trend helped by the fact that the last five games in this series have all seen the over pay out.

The over then is where the smart money is.

The winner of Sunday’s Game 7 will advance to the Stanley Cup Finals to meet the Eastern Conference champion New York Rangers. Game 1 in the best-of-seven series is scheduled for Wednesday (June 4) and will be hosted by the Western Conference champion.

For a full list of the latest NHL playoff odds, click here.

When available, updated NHL futures odds can be found here.

For a selection of NHL team prop bets, click here.

For a selection of NHL player prop bets, click here.

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