I woke up this morning to find that yesterday did indeed happen. The worst 24 hours of my sports life have left me pretty devastated, but my coworker and fellow hockey fan Gator left this on my desk:
Fortified on sugar and sympathy, I feel strong enough to write something.
It’s been quite a year for me and the Penguins. I traveled to Anaheim, Atlanta and New York for Pens games. I made my poor dad drive 12 hours round-trip to Buffalo on Thanksgiving eve for a Pens game. We invaded the ‘Burgh for a VIP all-Pens weekend.
On top of that, there was HBO’s 24/7. You all know what that did, because almost all of you felt it. Caps fans, Pens fans… I don’t care who you like (or if you like both, we’re all traitors turned here). That series gave this game something it never had before.
Then Crosby went out. And Malkin. And you would have thought the sky was falling in on the damned NHL the way people carried on. But the Penguins manned up and got it done. What other team faced the loss of 50%+ of their fire power and still finished 4th in their division? Racked up 106 points? The Penguins had the 2nd most regulation wins in the NHL this season with 49 (5 behind Vancouver).
I could go on for ages, but I already have. See posts on Max Talbot, Kris Letang, Tyler Kennedy and Jordan Staal. Sure Tanger went almost as long as Crosby without a goal, but what about Michalek and Asham putting up points? Production came from every corner.
In the end… ugh. The Pens let this one get away a little. I hate to say that but when you’re up 3-1, you should win. So this early summer leaves me feeling bitter and unsatisfied. But in October, we’re getting the band back together and you’d better watch out. We’re coming for you.
I’m proud of the Pens. Hard work doesn’t always pay off and it’s not always enough just to want something so badly. But never giving up is always worth it.Tags: jordan staal, Kris Letang, Max Talbot, Pittsburgh Penguins, Sidney Crosby, Tyler Kennedy