By Julian Linden
NEWARK, New Jersey (Reuters) - The New Jersey Devils are back in the Stanley Cup finals. After losing the first three games to the Los Angeles Kings, they have survived two eliminations to pull the best-of-seven series back to 3-2.
It has been 70 years since a team has come from 3-0 down to win the Stanley Cup but the Devils are starting to believe they can do it.
They have the momentum and the confidence and are determined to prove their detractors wrong.
"We've been counted out right back to last summer and the pre-season predictions all the way through," New Jersey coach Peter DeBoer told reporters after Saturday's Game Five 2-1 win.
"One thing about our group is that they believe we can win every game we play if we play the right way.
"It's just a matter of stringing together a couple more here."
While the odds are still stacked against the Devils, who have to win in Los Angeles on Monday to force a deciding seventh game at home, DeBoer believes that luck may have turned in favor of his team.
In each of the first two games, the Devils were beaten 2-1 in overtime, results which could easily have gone the other way.
"We didn't feel we belonged in the hole we were in," DeBoer said.
"We felt if we kept playing and got some big performances that we could climb out of it. We're slowly doing that. But we've got some work left to do."
Devils goalie Martin Brodeur, already a three-time Stanley Cup winner, said the pressure was mounting on the Kings, who have never won the National Hockey League Championship before.
"They're so close to winning the Stanley Cup that I'm sure it's getting to them a little bit, to be able to have all these chances and not capitalize on them," Brodeur said.
"We're looking to just stay alive."
But Devils captain Zach Parise was quick to play down expectations, saying his team could not afford to think too far ahead.
"We're happy that we're able to get these two (wins) and make it a series but we're still in a tough spot. We understand that," he said.
"We'll be prepared to play. We feel good, we're back in this thing now.
"We're making it interesting but now our focus is going to shift to getting one out there and bringing this back home."
(Editing by John O'Brien)