June 13, 2009


Penguins In Seventh Heaven With Cup Win Over Wings: `It`s a dream come true, everything you imagine and more`, said Captain Sidney Crosby. (Javno, 6/13/09)

The Pittsburgh Penguins claimed their revenge and a Stanley Cup with a nervy 2-1 Game Seven win over the Detroit Red Wings on Friday.

The Penguins, who lost the Cup to the Red Wings in six games a year ago, join the 1971 Montreal Canadiens as the only team to drop the opening two games of a final on the road and then claw their way back to win the title.

Maxime Talbot, a grinder with a knack for scoring big goals, tallied twice in the second period while goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury answered his critics with a solid 23-save effort as the Penguins celebrated their third Stanley Cup and first since 1992. [...]

After winning the Cup last year, the Red Wings had made Joe Louis Arena a virtual fortress, and had lost only once in 12 home playoff games prior to Friday's Game Seven.

Home teams had also prevailed in 12 out of 14 times the Cup finals were decided in the winner-take-all Game Seven.

In Hockey Final, Youth Drinks From the Cup (JEFF Z. KLEIN, 6/13/09, NY Times)
It was the first road victory for either team in this series, and it kept intact an unusual record for the Penguins. In their 42-year history, they have never lost a playoff Game 7 on the road, going 5-0 in that span.

The Penguins also rallied from deficits of 2-0 and 3-2 in the series for the franchise’s third Stanley Cup; the others were in 1991 and ’92, the era of Mario Lemieux and Jaromir Jagr.

Lemieux, now the owner of the Penguins, is the first man ever to win a Cup as both player and owner.

It was only the third time in 15 Stanley Cup finals that a Game 7 was won by the road team. The last time the visitors won a Game 7 was in 1971, when the Montreal Canadiens won in Chicago.

The victory could be a watershed moment in Penguins history, similar to when the Edmonton Oilers defeated the Islanders dynasty in 1984 after losing to them a year earlier. The Oilers then went on to start their own dynasty.

The younger Penguins played a near-perfect game against the Red Wings, whose usual precision passing and stick handling were often disjointed.

...were as good as sports get.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 13, 2009 7:14 AM
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