Kings staring at ‘lifelong goal’ in Game 4 as Devils attempt to begin comeback

"Adam, are 0-3 holes impossible?"

"No. Good thing they got to win four."

Adam Henrique's response is the mindset for the New Jersey Devils as they will face elimination here on out in the Stanley Cup Final. The Los Angeles Kings will celebrate their first championship in franchise history Wednesday night at Staples Center or the Devils will force a Game 5 Saturday night back in Newark.

Henrique knows a thing or two about coming back from an 0-3 deficit. During the 2010 Ontario Hockey League playoffs, Henrique's Windsor Spitfires went down 0-3 in their Western Conference final series against the Kitchener Rangers. Henrique would score six goals as the Spitfires won the next four en route to the OHL championship and later the Memorial Cup.

Through three games, the Devils have failed to figure out Jonathan Quick. The players continue to talk about getting shots on net and creating traffic in front of Quick to help kickstart the offense, but nothing has fazed the Kings goaltender. Petr Sykora will replace Jacob Josefson in hopes to sparking the offense a bit. Henrik Tallinder, who hasn't played since Jan. 17 after a blood clot was discovered in his leg, will step in for Peter Harrold on defense.

Like all hockey players, it's been about routine for the Kings and keeping things consistent. That's easy when you've faced zero adversity in the playoffs so far. Stick with what works, and that's exactly what head coach Darryl Sutter has done.

"I think routine is really important for players," said Sutter on Wednesday morning. "Do the same thing today as we did last game. It's not that we have to change anything, that's for sure. You know what, as I said all along, there is a point that it's about the players. The farther you go, the more games you play, so..."

Los Angeles will play their 18th and possibly last playoff game of the season on Wednesday night. The thoughts running through some of the Kings' players heads over the past 24 hours must have made sleeping a little tough. How many do you think will be able to start their pregame nap? The culmination of a lot of dreams could come to fruition Wednesday night with a victory, but Los Angeles has enough veterans who've been through this experience before to help settle down those who are feeling that extra adrenaline kick Wednesday.

The Stanley Cup may enter Staples Center if the Kings are leading late in the game Wednesday night. The Keeper of the Cup will spend some time polishing and readying it up before presentation time. The Kings don't want to have him have to put it away and wait until possibly Saturday to hand it out.

"We've worked the whole season to get here. Some guys work a whole career," said Dustin Penner. "Today, your dream, your lifelong goal stares you in the face.

"You have an opportunity now ... you have four games to reach it."

Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy

What to Read Next