I am too.
Sidney Crosby is 32. Evgeni Malkin is 33. Kris Letang is 32.
2025 is a whole hell of a lot closer than 2005.
Dominik Kahun was trending upward and looked like a player that could be a nice role player for the next few years.
The farm system isn’t exactly stout right now.
You’re scared, I understand. So am I.
The days of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang are now more numbered than ever.
So that’s why I’m telling you – put your fear away.
This corps has already achieved what the last big era could not – three Stanley Cup Championships. They also hold the current NHL record for consecutive Stanley Cup Playoff berths at 13, well on their way to a 14th.
Since the Penguins won the franchise’s first Stanley Cup in 1991, there has been no more successful franchise in this league.
Seriously, check the stats.
Devils and Red Wings are close with three but no one else has five.
Here’s where I am going with this: the future does not matter.
The Penguins are one day going to be without Crosby, Malkin, and Letang and when they are, it’s not going to be pretty.
Jake Guentzel is quite a talent but he’s not a franchise cornerstone.
Matt Murray is a starting and often elite goaltender but a franchise cornerstone, he is not.
Aside from that…not much there and not much coming.
So, a conditional third for Patrick Marleau who is chasing a Stanley Cup at age 40?
Go get him.
Dominik Kahun was good, but turning Olli Maatta into Conor Sheary is pretty okay.
Bolster your depth.
Draft picks and prospects are nice. They’re a lot of fun. I know I enjoy wondering what a green, inexperienced prospect could become one day.
I also know how much fun 2009, 2016, and 2017 were.
Compare those last two statements and there is none.
Watching Crosby in the back of pickup truck holding a Conn Smythe, the Prince of Wales Trophy, and the Stanley Cup cruising down the Boulevard of the Allies is sure as shit more fun than watching blurry highlights of the CHL or the NCAA on YouTube.
The Penguins could flame out in round one.
They could steamroll the Eastern Conference and win another Stanley Cup.
I don’t have these answers.
What I do know, is that without Dominik Kahun and a conditional third-round pick and with Patrick Marleau, Conor Sheary, and Evan Rodrigues, they’re in a much better spot to be ready for that trip down the Boulevard in June.
Put your fears down.
It’s playoff time in Pittsburgh.
Cover photo credit: Pittsburgh Penguins/Facebook