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Penguins vs. Senators Eastern Conference Final Preview: Five Questions with the Other Side

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Five questions with our Senators counterpart in advance of Eastern Conference Final

Pittsburgh Penguins v Ottawa Senators Photo by Jana Chytilova/Freestyle Photography/Getty Images

It’s always good to gain some perspective or insight from the other side of a matchup. In this case, with the opponent being the Ottawa Senators, we have Ross Arnold from Silver Seven.

Ross refers to himself as a ‘forever student’ from Ottawa, who lives in Calgary, who also happens to like the Sens. He enjoy Mexican food, Thai food, really just most kinds of food, and knows the lyrics to far too many songs. He’s been to 19 countries (20 if Scotland separates), and his high school prom date is now a nun. That’s pretty dope.

I sent Ross five questions to help us gain an angle on the Senators and what we may expect from this coming series.

I couldn’t bring myself to watch too much of the Senators two series so far (somewhat because the league is stupid and scheduled the two Eastern Conference second round matchups at the same time). What’s been the key to their success?

“It's a three-part system: a) Erik Karlsson; b) build a complex system that exploits the opponent's weaknesses and makes your team play better; c) Erik Karlsson. This team has played better than most expected, but without its star defenceman, everything would be a lot worse.”

How’s Craig Anderson been? The Penguins solved Sergei Bobrovsky and Braden Holtby. What can Anderson do that those two Vezina winners didn’t?

“He's been up and down. He's been good for one solid game each round so far, which most of us take comfort in, since we know he's capable of being better than that. He's no Vezina winner, but he's still a very good goalie in this league. It's important, because the team will need him to steal a couple games this round.”

Do you think there will be a bad-blood spillover between Sidney Crosby and Marc Methot?

“Does a fish need a bicycle? I can't see it happening. Targeting a player with a head injury will get you a lengthy suspension. Methot has been backing down in scrums to avoid hurting his finger. I'm guessing both teams have already forgot about this.”

Is Chris Neil elite? But for real, what gives? The Sens really can’t play him against the Penguins, can they?

“Chris Neil was once a premier pest in this league, but those days are long gone. The story is that his 93 seconds per game are inspiring the team to play harder. In my mind, the difference between having Neil for 2:30 or Wingels for 7:30 is miniscule, but Boucher is a fan of "rest as a weapon". I bet Neil doesn't play early in the series, but if things get ugly quick, look for him to return.”

Would you eat two chicken parms like JG Pageau?

“Challenge accepted.”

Much thanks to Ross for taking the time to answer these questions and give us a little bit of knowledge we might not otherwise have. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m just ready for them to play. Drop the puck.