Let's take a look at the two 12-packs that will attempt to wreak some havoc one another. How do the Douze in Montreal match up with the Douze in Philadelphia?
The Two Headed Dragon: Montreal can now throw 2 major spears at the opponent, with Saku Koivu ready for the start of this series. Prior logic dictated that Carbo would have wanted to hit the opponent with two lethal lines, however Game 7 against the Bruins provided one of the surprise moves of the season: Koivu centered Kovalev and Higgins, leaving Mario and Luigi Kostitsyn together on the second line with Pleks. The combination was effective and fans are now promised that their 2 best players will be together for the first time in over 4 years.
The other Two Headed Dra..hey? where's the other head?: Montreal seems to be faring well against teams with a concussed superstar. The face of the Boston series could have been dramatically different had Bergeron suited up for the Bruins. Here, Simon Gagné, with his history of concussion issues, has been sidelined for the rest of the season. And if the Bs were toying with the idea of bringing Bergeron back, that idea is out of the question as far as the former Remparts phenom is concerned. This leaves Brière with his redeeming 11 points in round 1 as the only proven, tried and tested offensive threat on a team filled with excellent secondary scoring prowess.
Secondary Scoring Prowess: Lupul, Richards (breakout season), Prospal, Hartnell, Carter. Don't look for these guys to roll over. It's a great mix of grit and skill, all these players capable of changing a game and a series on a dime. The lifelong adage in Philly is that size does matter and these guys all have a few inches on each member of the Canadiens' member. Montreal does have the speed and the skill, and hidden treasures of its own. Little Tits has shown that he can elevate his play, but is also capable of fending off rioting idiots swarming his Porshe. If the reuniting of Koivu and Kovalev created a new 1st line, then the two Tits and Pleks can create the back end of a killer one-two punch. On verra.
My Third Line is Better Than Yours: Without Smolinski, TK, and Begin, Montreal would have lost the series to the Bruins. They all share MVP honors and have given the team a steady blue chip presence that will yield hit after hit, stride after stride, and block after block. They played at a furious pace and provided the leadership every winner must have on its 3rd line. Carter, Upshall, Umberger. The CUU line. Let's hope they do play like ass. They have combined for 10 points in 7 playoff games, with Carter contributing 4 goals.
Sit Your Ass Down Guillaume: self-explanatory
Stevens Wears a Lucky G-String: Both rookies, both stretched to 7 games in the opening round. Can Stevens defeat Hermes Guy? Carbo was outcoached by Claude Julien and took time to respond to Boston's surge. He did reunite Kovy and Koivu which threw everyone in this city off-guard. It was a great move. Stevens is going to have to control his players and contain their overly agressive ways. He also has to take a page from Julien's book to neutralize the Habs power play.
Bonne chance to all. Not you, Philadelphia.