Battle of PA
Philadelphia versus Pittsburgh, two cities, one state.
When it comes to the NHL playoffs, rivalries don’t get much better than this. All it takes is a quick flashback to the 2000 season when these same two teams met in the Eastern Conference Finals. Game Four is one hockey fans will never forget as the two teams needed five, yes five overtime periods, to decide a winner. Was anybody awake at 2:35 a.m. when Keith Primeau scored the winning goal?
If you missed it, Comcast SportsNet is replaying this late-night thriller as part of its extensive Flyers coverage. The first airing is May 9 at 3 p.m. with a second showing May 11 afternoon at 4 p.m.
To help build up this highly anticipated best-of-seven series, the network is also presenting “Keystone Clash,” a live playoff special May 7 and May 8 at 7 p.m. The show features Michael Barkann, Steve Coates, Al Morganti and Chris Therien in studio, while Lance Crawford reports live from Pittsburgh. The group will break down the Penguins’ strengths and weaknesses, explore the rivalry between the teams, and analyze what the Flyers need to do in order to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.
Six of the seven games will be on Versus at 7:30 p.m., while Game Five, if necessary, will be May 18 on NBC10. Complete schedule is below.
NHL Eastern Conference Finals Schedule
Game One: May 9 at Pittsburgh
Game Two: May 11 at Pittsburgh
Game Three: May 13 at Philadelphia
Game Four: May 15 at Philadelphia
Game Five: May 18 at Pittsburgh 3 p.m. NBC10*
Game Six: May 20 at Philadelphia*
Game Seven: May 22 at Pittsburgh*
Tale of the cities
Hockey talk aside, which city is better?
Fan wise, Philadelphia has a national reputation, many times not for good reasons. Some might view it as a diehard passion for their teams. Lets look at some other key categories to determine the winner.
Philadelphia has it all. We are talking soft pretzels, Tastykakes, cheesesteaks and water ice.
Pittsburgh, believe it or not, produces a few well known food items of their own, such as Heinz Ketchup, Isaly’s Chopped Ham, around since 1933, and Klondike Bars.
Edge: Klondike Bars, especially with all the new flavors, gets Pittsburgh some votes, but Philadelphia wins out on soft pretzels, cheese steaks and Tastykakes.
Philadelphia played a major role in this country’s history. There is the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, where the US Constitution was signed, the Betsy Ross House, where the first American flag was sewed, and the Philadelphia Zoo, the nation’s first zoo.
Pittsburgh has a lot of bridges, over 1,720 of them, 720 of which are located inside the city limits. The town is also home to the country’s largest inland port.
Edge: Philadelphia takes this one in a landslide.
The Philadelphia Eagles might have a national following, but they have made two Super Bowl appearances and have no rings to show for them. The Phillies have one World Series title from 1980. The Flyers are of course hoping to end their very, very long championship drought that dates back to the ’74-’75 season. They also made it to the ’96-’97 championship round where they lost to Detroit.
Pittsburgh won back-to-back titles in the early ’90’s. The Steelers have enough Super Bowl rings to fit four fingers and a thumb.
Edge: Pittsburgh takes this one running away.
Philadelphia: Kevin Bacon; Bill Cosby; Tina Fey; Will Smith; Larry Fine; Bob Saget and Sylvestor Stallone.
Pittsburgh: Ted Danson; Jeff Goldblum; Holly Hunter; Michael Keaton; Demi Moore; Fred Rodgers and Sharon Stone.
Edge: The combination of Mr. Rodgers, Sam Malone from Cheers and Demi Moore makes Pittsburgh the winner.
Philadelphia: The Palestra on the University of Pennsylvania campus is one of the best places in the country to watch a college basketball game. Franklin Field is home to the Penn Relays. Citizens Bank Park is one of the nicest in the Major Leagues.
Pittsburgh: Heinz Field, PNC Park and Mellon Arena.
Edge: The combination of the South Philadelphia Sports Complex and the historic Penn arenas puts Philadelphia over the top.
Overall, both cities are close, but Philadelphia takes the title. Like there was any question.