The Los Angeles Kings have left the scorched earth of Arizona, hopefully for the last time. Now in LA, the Phoenix Coyotes enter the fire.

Once again we walk into Staples Center, home ice torn from those who feigned to be better than us during the regular season. 2-0 in the Conference Finals. A guy could get used to this.

What he can’t get used to but apparently must, is the other team taking liberties with our players. Such is the price you pay for frustrating a team by means of domination.

At the least those liberties have left Martin Hanzal wearing a suit and tie tonight. Marc-Antoine Pouliot will take his place. For the Kings, Colin Fraser is back in town but likely will not play, so Kyle Clifford remains. Let us hope his pugilism is not wholly necessary.

The Coyotes have been a very good road team this playoffs. They are 4-1. Color me unimpressed.

It will be interesting to see how they respond tonight, how quickly they devolve into playing like spoiled children. Or will they rally? This is truly their last chance to regain some semblance of the focused determination that got them this far. I am sure we will see some of that early on in the game. Likewise I am sure the Kings will absorb their efforts and regurgitate it down their throats twofold. The question is not, as it never has been these playoffs, whether the Kings can withstand a push from their opponent. The question is can their opponent tolerate our push back.

Or perhaps we don’t even give them the chance. As all the talk will be about how the Coyotes come out of the gate, the Kings will have boundless energy in their strides. Repercussions for the injustices of Hanzal, Smith, Morris and Doan to be extolled. The sweet success of Conference Final victory to be tasted on cool home ice. Adoration to be bestowed by us, the fans.

Another step towards the Cup to be taken.

For that, we pray.

In the name of the Captain, the Son of Philly and the Holy Goalie.

Bless us Oh Hockey Gods, and these thy gifts, which we are about to receive, from thy bounty, through LA Kings, Our Team. Amen.

Blessed are You, Kings our Team and Team of our fathers, Team of Dionne, Team of Luc and Team of Gretzky, the great, mighty and awesome Team, exalted Team, who bestows bountiful goals, who creates all wins, who remembers the insanity of the fans, and who, in love, brings a redeemer to their fans’ children, for the sake of Our Kings.

Peace be upon no Phoenix fan, without mercy or blessing of Kings.

Holy Sutter, Holy Stevens;
We give you thanks
that your Schemes, Attitude and Leadership
Are manifest with Power and Pressure
throughout all zones,
within all lines,
and we accept your Tutelage now,
in defense and forecheck.

I pray to the wunderkind, the play-maker, destroyer of all cap space, the enemy of forwards, of great brilliance, the descendent of Orr and of Borque, the one who shines like the Dewey flower.

I invoke and call upon thee O Father Mitchell,
Lord of long stick, Master of all lanes and gaps.
I invite you to the blue line;
Defend it, sustain it, make it home.

As it was,
As it is,
As it shall be
O Thou Carter
Of goals!
With the forehand
With the backhand
O Thou Carter
Of goals!
With the forehand
With the backhand

Our Rookies, King of steadfastness, strengthened Nolan, Voynov foothold, support us against the disdainful people.

I profess myself a Penner-worshipper, a Pennercakean, having vowed it and professed it. I pledge myself to the well-played puck, I pledge myself to the well-delivered hit, I pledge myself to the well-fed monster.

Voices above,
Voices of Fans,
Yell from your couch or barstool;
Voices below,
LA King’s Inner-voices,
Speak from the dreams of childhood;
So may our playoffs be beautiful.

Our Kings, who art on home ice
Hallowed be thy game.
Thy kingdom come, thy wills be done
On our ice, as it was on theirs
Give us this day our daily goals, and forgive no Coyote their transgressions,
As we pound into submission those who trespass against us.
And lead us past the third round,
Past these evil Coyote fucks.

Hail Kopi, full of grace, the fans are with thee.
Blessed art thou amongst players and blessed are the fruit of thy skills, goals.
Holy Kopi, dominant of centers, play for us sinners,
Now until the hour of our Cup.

Go fucking nuts.