* This much is certain; the Kings won't win the Stanley Cup next year.

* The reason is simple: no team wins The Cup two years in a row anymore.

* And if you don't believe me, just ask the Blackhawks, or Bruins, or even the Kings.

* Darryl Sutter is the best-coach-worst-interview coach in NHL history.

* And if you don't believe me, ask the legion of hockey writers who try to squeeze more than a four-word answer out of his yapper.

* This is how good a coach Sutter is; he carried Willie (Velvelah) Mitchell off the scrapheap and turned him into one of the NHL's best backliners.

* Want more? Sutter coaxed Alec Martinez from a third-rung defensemen into one of the top, clutch scoring defensemen since Drew Doughty.

* By the way if Doughty, Jonathan Quick and Marian Gaborik have a gripe about not winning the Conn Smythe Trophy, it's all legit.

* Trouble is that the Kings are so well-balanced that they boasted at least five guys who had a genuine shot at the Smythe. But not Velvelah.

* One contest -- Game Five of the Final Round -- was Brad Richards' best. But not enough for him to escape a buy-out from the Rangers.

* Fact is that Richards never was the same effective player after the lockout as he was before.

* Maybe it was because he seemed as much interested in fashion as he was into hockey.

* I'd like to see Jason Spezza in a Rangers uniform but Bryan Murray won't.

* Reader Jon Liss writes wondering whether Henrik Lundqvist could better have handled the rebound that went directly on to Martinez's stick.

* Funny thing is that I've been wondering that same thing for 24 hours.

* Don't know about you but I liked the NBC coverage of the playoffs, top to bottom.

* No matter how you shake it Rick Nash was the most disappointing, big-dough player in the Final.

* That is, after Brad Richards.

* Betcha that the Bruins are still kicking themselves for blowing that playoff to the Habs.

* And to think that just a year ago teams were wondering which club would be "lucky" enough to sign free agent David Clarkson.