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Former Kings and current Flyers Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds.
The Philadelphia Flyers and the Los Angeles Kings have built up an extremely connected history over the last few years, so much so that a few Flyers who reached the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010 are current Kings.
On June 23, 2011, the Flyers traded captain Mike Richards to the Kings. In return, the Flyers acquired Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds.
On July 2, 2011, former Flyer Simon Gagne signed with the Kings as a free agent after spending the 2010-11 season with the Tampa Bay Lightning.
On February 23, 2012, former Flyer Jeff Carter was traded to the Kings from the Columbus Blue Jackets.
The comparisons do not end on the ice.
Prior to the 2008-09 season, former Flyers head coach Terry Murray took the same position in Los Angeles. John Stevens became an assistant coach with the Kings after the Flyers fired him from the head coaching post during the 2009-10 season. Ron Hextall, the standout goaltender for the Flyers in the late 1980s and 1990s, serves as the Kings’ assistant general manager.
The Carolina Hurricanes also traded former Flyer Justin Williams to the Kings during the 2008-09 season.
Philadelphia has the firepower to dominate a playoff series like the Kings have done. The Flyers played just as well offensively in 2011-12 as the Kings did defensively. With the number of rookies Philadelphia put on the ice this season, the future looks even stronger.
The goaltending is just as strong as in Los Angeles from a name perspective. Ilya Bryzgalov established himself as one of the league’s most underrated goaltenders as a Phoenix Coyote.
Aside from some flashes of brilliance in March 2012, Bryzgalov has not met the expectations that come with the goaltender position in Philadelphia. He surely has the talent to keep pace with Quick in 2012-13, and with a greater understanding of the Philly atmosphere, he should improve.
Heading into the 2012-13 season, should hockey fans continue to call the Kings “Flyers West,” or are the Flyers now “Kings East?”