Over the past few days, Zach has given us come solid previews and analysis and which team has the advantage in goaltending, special teams, offense, and defense, and granted, all of these aspects of the game are very important. But one critical piece of analysis has strangely been missing from most media outlets.
Yes, I'm talking about which team wins the battle of the cities: Buffalo, or Philadelphia?
Your snap judgement is probably to say something like "u idiot Phily is obv better cuz buffaLOW is suXX," a comment which I will totally ignore. But after we take a completely unbiased, objective look at how these two cities stack up in five different categories, you may be surprised at what we find.
The Philly Cheesesteak is a strong contender in this category. It combines beef of questionable origin and the Magical Mystery Tour that is Cheez Whiz - but it's still a delicious mystery wrapped in an Amoroso bun. Cheesesteaks and their many variants are a fixture in most sporting arenas and restaurants.
Buffalo's entry should come as no surprise; the chicken wing has come from humble origins to join the Mount Rushmore of bar foods along with burgers, pizza, and fries. Heck, this finger-licking treat is so universal that there's even a national competitive wing eating competition that takes place in Philadelphia. Whether it's here at Duff's or Anchor Bar, out at Quaker Steak or BW3, or just your local watering hole, everyone loves wings! (Ed: note: But you'd better eat them with BLUE CHEESE dressing. If you eat them with Ranch, so help me God I will come over there and personally rip out your tongue.)
Philadelphia is home to historical landmarks that date back to the American Revolution. We're talking The Liberty Bell, First and Second Continental Congress, the signing of the Declaration of Independence at Independence Hall, The First Bank, the John Coltrane and Edgar Allen Poe Houses, and this little movie you may have seen called Rocky. And Rocky II-V. And Rocky Balboa.
Buffalo is home to one of the Natural Wonders of the World, Niagara Falls, which combines the educational experience of a school field trip with the disappointment of not going to Disneyland. Also, um, we have some Underground Railroad stuff, I think.
Philadelphia is somehow known as The City Of Brotherly Love, which must be one of those sarcastic nicknames that makes no rational sense. Aside from being notorious boo birds, they've pelted J.D. Drew with batteries, purposefully vomited on other fans, cheered a career-ending injury to Michael Irvin, prostituted themselves for playoff tickets, thrown snowballs at Santa Claus and attacked Tie Domi while he was in the penalty box, though that last one I can't totally disapprove of.
Buffalo is known as the City Of Good Neighbors, proven just the other day by the fact that I had a beer with my neighbor Russ, and it was very pleasant. We close highways for kids to sled on in the winter, have three separate St. Patty's Day parades, and sing Happy Birthday to the team owner just for fun. Oh, and Niagara Falls is like some kind of perpetual rainbow factory.
Most Famous Athletes
Philly has a plethora of great athletes that are beloved across America, such as the hilarious Charles Barkley, the iconic Dr. J, the legendary Bernie Parent, the man's man Mike Schmidt, the terrifying Reggie White, and the only man to have scored 100 points in a game and have sex with 20,000 women - allegedly - Wilt Chamberlain.
Buffalo has had some great players that will always be remembered fondly in the Queen City, such as Jim, Andre, Bruce, & Thurman, The French Connection and Dominik Hasek. However, the guys Buffalo is most famous for outside of Western New York are acquitted non-murderer OJ Simpson and cheap bastard/cabbie hater Patrick Kane.
Strategic Value In Case Of Invasion By Canada
While at first Buffalo may seem like a town of little military value, it has three big things working in its favor. First, the Robert Moses Power Plant, which converts the rushing water of Niagara Falls into hydroelectric power, produces 2.7 gigawatts of power - for comparison's sake, US nuclear power plants top out at 1.3 GW. Second, Buffalo would be a valuable asset in holding the Canadian border once those pesky Canadians decide to take back hockey once and for all. Finally, if worst comes to worst, we can always start using the Erie Canal again to transport goods to NYC and the Atlantic Ocean. Oh, and don't forget about Old Fort Niagara - if I remember anything from my fourth grade field trip, it's that Buffalo once successfully defended against an invasion by Canadian Rebels, or something like that. I wasn't really paying attention.
To examine Philadelphia's strategic value, I give you an excerpt from The American Revolution, by John Fiske: "When [Benjamin] Franklin at Paris first heard the news that Howe had taken Philadelphia, knowing well how slight was the military value of the conquest, he observed that it would be more correct to say that Philadelphia had taken General Howe."
There you have it folks. The Flyers may have the better forwards and the best defensive corps in the league, but Buffalo is tastier, friendlier, and more defend-able against Canadian attack than our Pennsylvanian enemies. After seeing these air-tight arguments, I don't think there's any doubt who will win this series.