The Flyers and Boston Bruins will meet in the intriguing Eastern Conference semifinals, which start Saturday afternoon at the Wells Fargo Center.
The Flyers, of course, made history last year against the Bruins, becoming the first team to overcome a three-games-to-none series deficit _ and a 3-0 deficit in Game 7 _ to advance to the conference finals.
Here are two views on the series:
WHY THE FLYERS WILL WIN….
1. As Danny Briere and Scott Hartnell pointed out, they are in the Bruins’ heads after last year’s stunning developments.
2. They are a much better defensive team than last year, thanks to the additions of Andrej Meszaros and Sean O’Donnell.
3. Housemates Briere and Claude Giroux are among the league’s most dangerous playoff scorers, and Brian Boucher has emerged as one of the top playoff goalies (2.10 GAA, .934 save percentage).
4. Winger James van Riemsdyk is having a coming-out-party and is a major force.
5. Chris Pronger, back from hand surgery, is well-rested and rounding into dominating form.
WHY THE BRUINS WILL WIN…..
1. They have extra motivation from last year’s humiliation.
2. Tim Thomas, the Vezina front-runner, can be dominating.
3. David Krejci is healthy. Last year, the talented center was injured in Game 3. Without him, the Bruins never won another game.
4. They are the only NHL team that can match the Flyers in size, depth, talent and physicality on the blue line.
5. They have three balanced lines and will benefit from the Flyers missing Jeff Carter (knee injury) for the first few games. Oh, and their power play (0 for 21 vs. Montreal) has to rebound.
AND THE WINNER IS…..
This time, it’s the Bruins _ and Thomas _ who provide the Game 7 theatrics. Boston in seven.
* * *
Give me your pick and a quick reason.
* * *
For constant Flyers updates, follow Sam Carchidi on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BroadStBull.
Get exclusive videos and analysis in our new app for iPhone and Android. Download it here.