On both PFT Live and Twitter in recent weeks, I’ve performed my annual embrace of Pittsburgh Penguins fandom. It goes back a very long time.
When I was nine, my dad took me to a Kings-Penguins game at the Civic Arena, a building that felt old even when it was fairly new. (In a good way, if that makes any sense. And it probably doesn’t.) In 1991, when the Penguins made their first run at a Stanley Cup, I was all in, watching any games I could find on TV, listening to any others on the radio, and enjoying every moment of the first true success from a franchise that had been far more bad than good.
The following year I was living in Pittsburgh, and I ended up going to at least one game in every round of the playoffs: Devils (one game), Rangers (two), Bruins (one), Blackhawks (two). Even then, ticket prices stretched the average Yinzer household budget, but the place was packed every night.
The Penguins in recent years have been even better than they were in the early ’90s. The day after signing the first PFT deal with NBC in 2009, my wife, son, and I drove from Manhattan to Pittsburgh and saw Game Six of the Stanley Cup Final, with Pittsburgh winning to force a Game Seven in Detroit. (The Pens won. A month later, we went to a Green Day show in Pittsburgh, and when someone yelled, “Let’s go Pens,” frontman Billie Joe Armstrong replied, “Let’s go penis?”)
Two years ago, my son and I saw the Penguins roar back from an early 2-0 deficit to tie Game Five of the Stanley Cup Final against San Jose. I yelled to him over the noise that, no matter what happens the rest of the game, he’ll never forget that moment.
The Penguins lost that night, won the Cup the next game, won it again last year, and seemed destined to make it three in a row, misguided 3LIEVE motto notwithstanding. The push ended last night against the Capitals, and so I invited my Internet son (a/k/a PFT Commenter of Barstool Sports’ Pardon My Take) to join PFT Live to bask in the glow of a moment he’ll never forget.
He also addressed whether he’ll make good on a promise to consume equine fecal matter (that sounds far more refined and proper than “horsesh-t”), which is simultaneously fascinating and very, very gross. While I wouldn’t blame him for weaseling out of it, it sound like he’s going to do it.
The next question is what will he do if the Capitals win the Stanley Cup? Here’s an idea: Remove the sunglasses and reveal his true identity, proving once and for all that he’s not Ed Sheeran.