With that spirit of brotherly love in mind, FrankD of Pensburgh and I asked each other five questions each to get a look into how things are going on the other side of Pennsylvania. You can (and should) read all ten questions and answers after the jump.
Broad Street Hockey's Questions for PensBurgh:
1. True or false: The Flyers were the toughest opponent the Penguins faced in the East on their way to the Cup.
5. The Penguins have not been a particularly popular pick to repeat even as champions of the East, with the Flyers, Caps, and Bruins all getting picked more by the so-called experts. Why do you think that is, and do you think the Penguins should be considered the favorites to make it back to the finals?
The odds are stacked against them. Like I said in the previous question, that doesn't even seem to be a consideration for the team or fans. And hey, the East is strong. Not much has changed in the conference with regards to these four teams that would make you think either will suffer or do worse this year than last. Pittsburgh is relatively unchanged, Philly added a punch, Washington will now potentially start with the goaltender who carried them through the playoffs and Boston, minus Kessel, can still match with the others. It's going to be an interesting year.
They're certainly an answer. Emery is a goalie with a great playoff track record, which is what the Flyers needed. Pronger is obviously a beast--a shutdown d-man, which is something every team can use more of. His vocal veteran leadership will be a huge help to this team, as will his offensive presence. For how scoring the offense was, the Flyers D had been seriously offensively-challenged. The double-digit goals Pronger should bring to the table will certainly be appreciated.
2. Last season Philly posted six different 25-or-more goal scorers - Jeff Carter (46), Simon Gagne (34), Mike Richards and Scott Hartnell (30), Mike Knuble (27) and Joffrey Lupul (25) - no doubt an impressive showing. With Knuble and Lupul signing elsewhere in the offseason, do you think Philly has two guys who can step it up and replace them or will this be an area where the Flyers might struggle?
3. In your honest opinion, are the Flyers a better team on paper this season than last?
4. Why is it that whenever the Flyers make a move (Pronger specifically here) it's seen as a deterrent to Pittsburgh? It's not like you guys play the Pens 82 games a year.
5. I guess on that similar note, for two-straight seasons Pittsburgh bounced Philly from the playoffs (as if you needed a reminder). Some would argue Pronger was brought in as a guy who can prevent that from happening again. Discuss.