NBC analyst Pierre McGuire doesn't mince his words on what he thinks of the Flyers-Capitals playoff series that will open Friday night at the Verizon Center in Washington.
"I think this will be one of the bloodiest series," McGuire said in a conference call this week.
McGuire pointed to the stick across the nose the Flyers' Scott Hartnell got in his altercation with Sidney Crosby last week in Pittsburgh as typical of what would occur in this Eastern Conference series.
"He got his nose broken and he was a bloody mess, but he was still there to the end," McGuire said.
"I think this Philly-Washington [series] is going to be downright ugly," he said.
McGuire said the Capitals would win the series based on the better goaltending of Cristobal Huet against that of the Flyers' Martin Biron.
"I expect it's going to come down to a goaltending situation and who's going to be the better goalie," McGuire said. "And right now, neither one of those goalies has won a playoff round in their NHL history. I think right now Huet has probably got a little bit of an advantage."
McGuire said the Flyers would bring a style of play reminiscent of the 1970s but would find it difficult to intimidate Alexander Ovechkin. He is arguably the meanest skilled superstar in the NHL in recent years.
"The thing that Alex Ovechkin does, like any superstar in the NHL, is he attacks the people that are trying to attack him," McGuire said. "He will not be intimidated. He's yet to show that in his three years in the league."