THE FIRST ALL-CALIFORNIA SERIES
The last time? Back In 1969, the Los Angeles Kings defeated the Oakland Seals, 4-3, in their Quarterfinal series.
LAKings.com takes a look back at that 1969 Kings-Seals series.
April 2, 1969: Kings 5, Oakland 4 (OT)
"I saw the puck lying there and took a forehand swipe at it," Irvine told the San Mateo Times in 1969. "I didn’t see it go in, but I saw it in the net."
Prior to that overtime goal, Sid How held the fasted playoff OT tally scoring just 25 seconds into the extra period as the Detroit Red Wings beat the New York Americans in 1940.
The Seals held leads of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 before the Kings rallied.
"We played our best game in a long time," head coach Red Kelly said. "We came from behind and had an uphill battle."
Earl Ingarfield opened the scoring with a short-handed goal 8:01 into the game. The Kings tied it some five minutes later when Croteau collected Real Lemieux’s rebound. Joe Szura scored for the Seals at 16:21 and starting goaltender Gerry Desjardins would leave the game due to a lower body injury and Oakland leading 2-1 after one period of play.
Desjardins stopped 6-of-8 shots in the first period and was replaced in net by Wayne Rutledge
Croteau scored his second goal of the night 3:07 into the second but Francois Lacombe tied the score again with just 19 seconds left in the second period on a 70-foot shot that Rutledge misplayed to give Oakland a 3-2 lead entering the final period of play.
Joyal then tallied two goals in 3:31 to put the Kings ahead, 4-3. Gene Ubriaco tied the score with just under three minutes remaining setting up Irvine’s heroics.
NOTES: The game marked the first Kings overtime playoff win in franchise history and just the Kings’ second OT playoff game ever (4-3 L at Minnesota on April 16, 1968.)…Irvine scored three game-winning goals against the Seals during the 1968-69 season…Seals head coach Fred Glover would later coach the Kings from Oct. 30, 1971 - April 1, 1972, replacing the first Kings GM in team history Larry Regan, who had taken over behind the bench in 1970-71…Glover was 18-42-8 in his Kings coaching career…Real Lemieux had two assists…Eddie Joyal also tallied an assist for a three-point effort (2-1=3)…Three Kings had multi-point games: Joyal (2-1=3), Corteau (2-0=2) and Lemieux 0-2=2)…Rutledge made 20-of-22 stops to earn the win, which turned out to be his final postseason win…Rutledge went 2-4 in eight post season games in his NHL career…Brian Skrudland owns the current record for fastest OT playoff goal, scoring in just 9 Seconds as the Montreal Canadiens defeated the Calgary Flames on May 18, 1986.
April 3, 1969: Oakland 4, Kings 2
"It was a bad goal," Kings head coach Red Kelly told the Press Telegram in 1969. "That’s four bad goals we have given up this series and that’s too many."
Oakland Captain Terry Hampson scored the first of his two goals on the night, less than two minutes into the opening frame with Irvine in the penalty box due to a high-sticking penalty.
Irvine would make up for his mistake in the second period, tying the score just 20 seconds into the middle frame to tie the score at one.
Menard put the Kings on top, 2-1, when he scored with the Kings having six attackers on the ice after a delayed penalty to Doug Roberts. Roberts would pick up a game misconduct for arguing the call. In all, 14 penalties were called in the game.
Hampson then scored his second goal of the game with 1:37 left in the second period to tie the score and Oakland took over in the third, scoring twice and out-shooting the Kings 16-11.
"Our guys plodded out in the third period," Kelly said. "They didn’t have the zip. We had some good chances but they didn’t want to shoot."
Jarrett scored the game winner for Oakland at 2:44 of the third period and Bob Dillabough added an empty netter for a 4-2 Seals win.
Oakland’s Gary Smith stopped 32-of-34 for the win, while LA’s Wayne Rutledge made 30 saves in taking the loss. LA out-shot the Seals, 38-34.
NOTES: Gary Smith was nicknamed "Suitcase" after stints with the Chicago Blackhawks, Oakland/California Seals/Golden Seals, Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks, Washington Capitals and Winnipeg Jets…In 1970-71 with the California Golden Seals, Smith set then records for games played by a goaltender (71) and losses (48)…Irvine is 34th all-time in Kings playoff scoring with 6-4=10 in 17 post season games…Irvine was the 10th pick of the Kings in the 1967 Expansion Draft from the Boston Bruins.
April 5, 1969: Oakland 5, Kings 2
"I guess we weren’t ready tonight," Kings defenseman Brent Hughes told the Press Telegram. "Guess we thought it’s our building and we could just put our sticks out on the ice and win."
It looked that way for half the game.
After a scoreless first period, Real Lemieux jammed home a rebound for a controversial goal and a 1-0 lead 10:21 into the second period.
Oakland then scored four goals over the next 17:39 to take an insurmountable 4-1 lead and knock Kings goaltender Wayne Rutledge, who finished with 23 saves, out of the game.
Oakland’s Joe Szura started the scoring for Oakland 11:30 into the second to tie the score and Gary Jarrett gave the Seals the lead at 14:48.
Earl Ingarfield scored the game-winning goal just 13 seconds into the third period and Mike Laughton added some insurance nine minutes later to push the score to 4-1.
The Kings Bill Inglis cut the deficit to 4-2 but Oakland’s Gerry Ehman added a goal to complete the scoring.
The Seals’ Gary Smith stopped 31-of-33 shots for the win. Wayne Rutledge stopped 23-of-27 in the loss while Gerry Desjardins stopped 4-of-5 in relief.
NOTES: The game winner was the only playoff game winning goal of Ingarfield's career…Ingarfield finished with 4-6=10 in the seven game series…Laughton scored only two post season goals in his NHL career, both in the seven game series vs. the Kings…Inglis was the Kings 12th pick of the 1967 Expansion Draft…His goal was the only NHL post season goal of his career…Inglis only tallied one NHL regular season goal as well, during the Kings first season of 1967-68…Inglis finished his NHL career scoring 1-3=4 in 36 games with the Kings and Sabres.
April 6, 1969: Kings 4, Oakland 2
"If you guys check, " Cahan told the Press Telegram, "I think that's a record for three defensemen to score a goal in a Stanley Cup Playoff game."
The Seals tallied the first goal of the night as Earl Ingarfield put Oakland up 1-0 just 1:27 into the first. White tied it halfway through the opening stanza and forward Howie Menard put the Kings up 2-1.
Cahan scored the winner just 24 seconds into the second period while Hughes closed the scoring with his goal at 14:06, capping a run of four straight goals over 23:13.
Ted Hampson brought the Seals within 4-2, but Gerry Desjardins held strong making 11 third period saves and 27 in all, in earning his first win of the series.
Gary Smith took the loss stopping 29-of-33 shots.
NOTES: The Kings Bob Wall finished with two assists in the game, it was the only two assists for him in the series…Wall finished with three postseason assists in 22 games…Menard, who finished with a goal and an assist, would play for the Seals in 1969-70.
April 9, 1969: Oakland 4, Kings 1
"Their third goal was the killing goal," Kings head coach Red Kelly told the Press Telegram. "But we have to score on Gary Smith. He made some big saves."
Mike Laughton scored 66 seconds into game, but Los Angeles would tie the score as Gary Croteau was credited with the Kings lone goal after Smith put it in his own net.
Dillabough then tallied a goal in both the second and third periods and Norm Ferguson capped the scoring for a 4-1 win.
Both teams had 37 shots on goal Gerry Desjardins took the loss, making 33 saves.
NOTES: The 1968-69 playoff run was the only time that Croteau appeared in the post season after playing in 684 NHL games from 1968-80 with the Kings, Red Wings, Seals, Scouts and Rockies…Croteau played four seasons with the Seals scoring 47 goals.
April 10, 1969: Kings 4, Oakland 3
"I was glad to see Flett score," Kings head coach Red Kelly told the Press Telegram.
Flett added, "I was getting fed up with myself."
For Flett it was his first goal of the series after leading the Kings in goals in 1967-68 with 26 and finishing second with 24 in 1968-69.
Los Angles got on the board when Ted Irvine scored his first goal since Game No. 2. Oakland’s Mike Laughton would tie it up one minute later. The next two Kings goals were scored off of Seals’ turnovers, with Brian Campbell and Lowell MacDonald scoring for a 3-1 Kings lead.
MacDonald’s goal was short handed.
However, Brian Perry and Gene Ubriaco, who was skating in his first shift of the game, tallied goals to tie the score up at three in a wild first period. The two teams combined for six goals on 28 shots and eight penalties for 16 minutes in the first period.
Flett would score his game winner 15 minutes into the second period while Los Angeles held the Seals to just nine shots over the second and third periods.
Kelly credited "a mighty sweet victory to the return to our checking game."
NOTES: Dillabough skated in just one shift after aggravating a shoulder injury due to a hard check into the boards…he tallied two goals -including the game winner - in Game Five…Mike Laughton also was injured in the game, leaving with a groin injury…Kings Owner Jack Kent Cooke gave $2,000 in bonuses to the players after the win…It was the first win for the Kings in which they faced elimination after losing in 1968 to Minnesota, 9-4 in Game 7.
April 13, 1969: Kings 5, Oakland 3
The Kings twice blew one-goal leads allowing the Seals to overcome 1-0 and 2-1 leads before two third-period goals by Bill Flett and Lowell MacDonald put the game away.
Irvine sandwiched his two goals at 2:13 into the game and 12:14 around a goal by Carol Vadnais just four minutes in.
The Kings were shorthanded for over eight minutes in the first period yet still ended the period with a 2-1 lead.
"I thought if we could survive that, we might win the game," head coach Red Kelly told the San Mateo Times. "I told our boys the checking was going to win or lose it. The checking's what did it."
After Earl Ingarfield tied the score with his fourth goal of the series in the second period, Flett tied it five minutes later and MacDonald tallied the game winner mid-way through the third.
Gerry Ehman brought the Seals within 4-3 with just under 10 minutes to go, but Howie Menard iced the game with his third goal of the series.
Gerry Desjardins earned the win, stopping 24-of-27 while Gary Smith stopped 26-of-30 in suffering the loss.
NOTES: The series win was the Kings first in franchise history…The Kings would be swept by the St. Louis Blues who had advanced by sweeping the Philadelphia Flyers...St. Louis would lose to Rogie Vachon and the Montreal Candiens in four games in the Stanley Cup Finals…Vachon of course would later star for the Kings.