In nature everything runs in cycles. Seasons change from winter to spring to summer to fall, and back again. The same holds true in sports. Championship teams are cultivated and nurtured through a combination of drafts, trades and free-agent signings until they peak. Then they gradually diminish until they enter a rebuilding phase.
Only three [...]
I’ve been a die-hard Penguins fan for nearly 40 years. During that span there have been precious few times—especially since the arrival of Mario Lemieux—when I haven’t been proud of our team. But this is one of ‘em.
It isn’t that the Pens lost a crucial Game 3 to the piping-hot Flyers yesterday. Every team loses. Rather, it’s the way they los [...]
After watching Philadelphia cut through the black and gold like a knife going through a tub of warm butter in Games 1 and 2, the question on everyone’s mind is, “can the Penguins beat the Flyers?” The answer is yes.
But first, a history lesson. Step into my time machine, if you will, and set the date for April 26, 1992. Fresh off a dismal 7-2 [...]
As our Penguins prepare to battle archenemy (and likely first-round playoff opponent) Philadelphia on Sunday, I thought it might be a good time to reflect on the Flyers’ signing of free agent Jaromir Jagr last summer. Kind of a hockey version of Back to the Future, if you will.
Just to refresh your memory, the former Steel City great decided [...]
During the mid-1980s, then-Penguins general manager Eddie Johnston worked hard to build a competitive team around budding superstar Mario Lemieux. One of the club’s cornerstones during those developmental years was a feisty left wing named Randy Cunneyworth.
An eighth-round pick of Buffalo in the 1980 Entry Draft, Cunneyworth established hims [...]
With temperatures hovering magically at 66 degrees, the Penguins unveiled a magnificent statue of their owner and all-time greatest player, Mario Lemieux, at a special midday ceremony on Wednesday outside of CONSOL Energy Center.
Too bad Mario didn’t fare as well in the NBC Hockey Network broadcast booth that evening. Indeed, when No. 66 join [...]
Today’s unveiling was almost perfect. One thing that would have made it perfect would have been the absence of the woman next to me who kept yelling, “WE CAN’T HEAR YOU,” and we were only 10 rows deep from the barrier. I can’t imagine what fans stacked all the way back to Washington Place thought was going on whe [...]
As a member of the illustrious draft class of 1990 that included Penguins prodigy Jaromir Jagr, Robert Lang was projected to be a star. Indeed, the Teplice, Czechoslovakia native possessed all the tools. A smooth, powerful skater, the 6’3” 217-pounder had excellent vision and an exquisite touch, both for passing and shooting.
While Lang event [...]
Most Penguins fans are familiar with the All-Star exploits of Steel City superstars like Mario Lemieux. Indeed, those of us who are old enough will never forget Mario’s breathtaking four-goal effort before an adoring throng at the 1990 All-Star Game—the first ever hosted in Pittsburgh.
However, No. 66 isn’t the only Penguins player to shine i [...]
What if we tried to make Pittsburgh not look stupid & petty tonight for the HBO 24/7 camera’s and national TV? Lemieux once got a standing ovation in Philadelphia when he showed up.
Today all I see and hear is reporters all over the radio, news print and social media telling me about how I should boo Jaromir Jagr tonight. I will n [...]