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45 Years of Hockey in Pittsburgh

October 12th, 2012 at 1:54 PM
By Thomas Kurth

'Spectators Plaza' photo (c) 2011, RJ Schmidt - license:

On October 11th 1967, 45 years ago from yesterday, the Pittsburgh Penguins franchise played their first game in the National Hockey League. Since that day, there have been many exciting moments in Pittsburgh hockey. As a franchise the Penguins have won 3 Stanley Cups, with the last one coming in the 2008-2009 season. There was the emergence of Mario Lemieux, the first superstar for the Penguins. Lemieux helped lead the Pens to two Stanley Cups. Jaromir Jagr was a scoring machine for the Penguins and was also a big part of the Pens two championships in the early 90s.

Super Mario’s contributions off the ice were just as important to the franchise as all his record-breaking performances on the ice. Lemieux saved the Penguins franchise when he stepped up and became the majority owner, saving the team from bankruptcy. In 2005, with the first overall pick in the draft the Penguins took Sidney Crosby. Crosby had been in the spotlight for a while and was the surefire top choice in the draft. Sid the Kid did not disappoint and has been a superstar ever since, winning an MVP, scoring titles and of course the Stanley Cup in 2009. Crosby is the captain of the Penguins and the face of the NHL. With Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang, and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, the Penguins have a young nucleus. If the Penguins are able to keep all these pieces together then the future looks bright for hockey in Pittsburgh for a long time to come.

Tags: Hockey, NHL, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Penguins

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