The Stanley Cup playoffs are finally here.
On Wednesday night at the Consol Energy Center, the Pittsburgh Penguins will host the Philadelphia Flyers in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.
There may not be a more anticipated series than this one. The Keystone State rivalry is one of the most heated in all of hockey. Just recently on April 1st the teams combined for 52 penalty minutes in the last 1:03 of the game thanks to a massive brawl in a 6-4 Philadelphia win.
Now, the teams reset and get ready to battle in a much tougher and more important setting.
The Flyers have to find a way to slow down Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Crosby has been unstoppable since his return from post-concussion syndrome, scoring 25 points in those 14 games.
Malkin is likely the Hart Trophy winner, scoring 50 goals and leading the NHL with 109 points. Don't forget about James Neal either, who scored 40 goals himself.
Philadelphia will likely look to out-gun the Penguins with their own firepower. Pittsburgh is the highest scoring team in the league, but the Flyers are right behind them ranking second.
Scott Hartnell has had a career year with 37 goals, while Claude Giroux has racked up 93 points including 28 goals as well. Wayne Simmonds and Matt Read need to play as they have all season, tallying 28 and 24 goals respectively.
Two ex-factors to keep an eye on are the former Penguins Jaromir Jagr and Maxime Talbot. Each had 19 goals this year and would love nothing more than to knock out Pittsburgh.
It will be a physical, high-scoring and fast paced series. The puck can't drop soon enough.
Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
TV: NBC Sports Network
For more on the Flyers, be sure to check out our blog Broad Street Hockey and SB Nation Philly for all the latest news and updates.