So I'm back from a (far too) short vacation up in Canada, and while I was bowing my head at the mecca of hockey, back home, my faith in all major and minor deities of the sport were reaffirmed.
Let us dip back into our memory banks several years.
Five years and one Stanley Cup ago, the Penguins lay on a precipitous perch. We wondered whether we would not just have a new building to play in, but if we would even have a team to fill it. The thought of watching the Kansas City Penguins (or whatever the hell they would have been called) kept us up nights. Those months were a blur of Sidney Crosby, Don Barden, Casinos and for most of us, pints of Guinness. But there was one central figure that stood out. One person that became the true enemy.
That person was Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell.
Rendell made it his personal crusade to ensure that the Penguins would never set foot in another arena. He fought tooth and nail against any form of public funding for the Pens new stadium, railing against the majority of Western Pennsylvanians (not shocking, given his strong allegiance towards Philadelphia). As Pittsburgh fans, during this time, Ed Rendell became the bane of our existence. The simple mention of his named caused Pens fans to suppress their gag reflexes. Thankfully, as we all know, Rendell ended up on the losing side of that battle.
Fast forward to today. We have a beautiful new arena just frothing at the mouth for hockey. But before Consol Energy became a hockey haven, it had a little treat in store for us. I like to think of it as a small thank you to the Pens fans that fought so hard for the arena to ever see the light of day.
With the red carpet undeservedly rolled out for the bigwigs of the state, a swirl of poetic justice blew through Mellon Arena, causing Governor Rendell to perform his best Greg Louganis impersonation .
That moment was so delicious that I think I'll grab a doggie bag to take the rest home.
Unfortunately, Rendell was okay. But it was an amazing moment for all of those who remember all of the ways in which Rendell tried to screw us over. If this wasn't fate, then I don't know what is.
It may only be August, but I believe we just got our first win at Consol Energy Center.