Congratulations to the young and not so restless Pittsburgh Penguins in winning the 2009 Stanley Cup Championship.
Not since the 1971 Montreal Canadiens, has a visiting team won Sir Stanley's mug on an opposing teams playing field.
Led by Evgeni Malkin's playoff winning series MVP claim to the Conn Smythe Trophy, the young and robust Pittsburgh Penguins have won professional hockey's "holy grail."
The 2 to 1 victory by the visiting Penguins has set a number of new standards in the new NHL of today. Penguin Captain Sidney Crosby and his young Trojans turned the tide on a veteran savvy Detroit Red Wing team that had won the prize in 2008 at the Penguins home "igloo."
Detroit was on the verge of being declared the first 21st century dynasty in the modern day NHL until Crosby et al derailed this popular and storied franchise.
Sidney Crosby has just become the youngest player to win the Stanley Cup at the ripe old age of 21 years and he is only finishing his his third full NHL season. It took his "landlord," personal friend, mentor, and team owner, Mario Lemieux a surprising seven years to win his first of two Stanley Cups in 1991 and again in 1992.
For Crosby, Malkin and goaltender Marc Andre Fleury this young and gunning Penguin squad has "the world as its oyster" as they now, go on to challenge, their former teacher and mentor, the Detroit Red Wings in trying to forge ahead and begin a dynasty in today's NHL, in what has become a very competitive and level playing field for professional sports.
As they say in the NFL: "on any given Sunday" and in today's NHL, this could easily be said: "in any given season."
Pittsburgh's midseason decision to promote rookie head coach Dan Bylsma, only five years removed from playing pro hockey himself and hired to replace NHL veteran bench boss Michel Therrien after an early February Saturday night fiasco in Toronto, where the Pens lost a humiliating five to nothing decision to a re-building Maple Leafs squad, had no idea that he was about to embark on the quest for hockey's premier holy grail.
Bylsma subsequently went on to turn, a then struggling Penguins squad, from a forgotten, 14th place '08 Stanley Cup bridesmaid, to a virtual overnight contender in the very competitive NHL Eastern Conference.
Bylsma and his rookie coaching style with his patented "Disco Dan" energetic exhuberance, revitalized this Crosby/Malkin led team into believing, again, that they were worthy of competing in Sir Stanley's end of the season tournament, known as the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Congratulations to Disco Dan and his entourage of coaches and personnel for leading this team through adversity and character building, while re-focusing, on a born again hockey team that eventually would believe in themselves as true potential and future champions.
This Penguin juggernaut had to take on and beat substantial challengers such as the Ovechkin led Washington Capitals, the upstart and just as youthful Philadelphia Flyers and the disciplined and underdog Carolina Hurricanes.
With Sidney Crosby limping into the third period and the game still undecided, Andre Fleury and the Conn Smythe winning—and maybe league MVP—Evgeni Malkin turned the disappointed "teacher" Detroit Red Wings into a bystander as "Stanley Cup Doubter" Marian Hossa stood by and watched his former teammates raise the Stanley Cup on Hossa's pond in a turnaround of last years championship game!
Who knew how to write a sequel to last years Stanley Cup, I guess you could say: 'what comes around goes around'!
For the record, the Pittsburgh Penguins have never lost a Game Seven in franchise history, don't ever bet on this underdog or shall I say Penguin. Today they truly have "happy feet!"
Congratulations again to owner and Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux and his 2009 Stanley Cup Champions!