The Pittsburgh Penguins opened the 2022-2023 regular season in a very interesting fashion. On opening night against the Arizona Coyotes, Pittsburgh’s 2022-2023 roster was introduced to the fans. For the 17th consecutive season, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang are all teammates for the Pittsburgh Penguins in front of a PPG Paints Arena crowd in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
They have been to the Stanley Cup Playoffs in 16 straight seasons and are looking to make it 17 straight years. Pittsburgh will have high expectations once again this season under head coach Mike Sullivan. Online casino games are a very common thing to do these days if people don’t want to do something different. What does the band being back together for the Pittsburgh Penguins mean?
In It For the Legacy
The legacy between these three players is already cemented in hockey’s galore. They will go does as franchise icons for the Pittsburgh Penguins, which will never be replaced with Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby, and Kris Letang. Malkin and Letang were free agents during the summer, and a lot of people were unsure whether or not they would be returning to the franchise.
Kris Letang signed a contract before Evgeni Malkin did. Malkin signed at the very last second, and it appeared as if he was going to be playing somewhere else. These three were meant to be together, and Sidney Crosby would not have been thrilled if he left. They won three Stanley Cup titles together and maybe are looking for one more together.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have one of the oldest rosters in the entire NHL, but they want to prove they are not done winning titles despite the fact they have not won a playoff series in almost five years. Sidney Crosby is one of the greatest players of all time. Evgeni Malkin is also a generational talent, and Kris Letang is a beast at the defenseman position.
Ron Hextall Deserves Credit
General manager Ron Hextall deserves a lot of credit for bringing back a lot of this team instead of trying to make irrational decisions. Hextall gave a lot of players team-friendly contracts so they can bring a lot of last year’s roster back. Other than Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin being re-signed, Danton Heinen, Kasperi Kapanen, and Rickard Rakell were also brought back.
However, he did make a risk or two in terms of making trades. Hextall traded away defenseman Mike Matheson to the Montreal Canadiens and John Marino to the New Jersey Devils. Ron Hextall acquired defenseman Ty Smith from New Jersey, defenseman Jeff Petry and centerman Ryan Pohelig from Montreal, and signed defenseman Jan Rutta from the Tampa Bay Lightning via free agency.
He also kept Casey DeSmith to be the backup goalie for Tristan Jarry. Ron Hextall kept a win-now roster for Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang.
A Well Coached Hockey Team
Head coach Mike Sullivan was also signed to a contract extension very recently. He is one of the best coaches in the NHL and deserves a Stanley Cup-caliber team and not a rebuilding team. Having to coach these legends with Crosby, Malkin, and Letang is a privilege for him. He also has one of the best goal scorers for the Pittsburgh Penguins as well as Jake Guentzel.
Bryan Rust is also a very underrated hockey player for this team. Sullivan believes he is very versatile. He also has worked with injuries over the years and has to work with players like Brian Dumoulin, who is on the decline as a defenseman. However, having an identity established and leadership as well under Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang is something that can’t be overlooked over the past 17 years with this franchise, and are looking to write more history together.
Fans want another Stanley Cup Title with this crew, and some of them didn’t want the band to come back together, but this is what they have to deal with for the next 3-6 years. The trio of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang deserve to retire together whenever they want to, with the Pittsburgh Penguins.