I can admit when I’m wrong.
Three months ago, the Pittsburgh Penguins were floundering. They were in danger of missing the playoffs in a league where more than half the teams make the post season. They had terrible coaching, a terrible power play, and terrible goaltending. Things looked bleak at the Igloo and I jumped ship.
Then a miraculous turnaround happened. They made several smart trades, bringing in scoring help and veteran leadership. The got their top goalie back and healthy. And most importantly, they fired their inept idiot of a head coach and replaced him with a smart young guy who allows the team to play to their strengths.
Since Disco Dan Bylsma took the reins, the team has undergone a complete renaissance. They closed out the regular season by surging to the #4 overall seed. In the first round of the playoffs, they put the kibosh on the thuggish Philadelphia Flyers. Then, in a battle for the ages against the Washington Capitals, superstar Sidney Crosby showed everybody that he and not overhyped cheap shot artist Alexander Ovechkin was indisputably the best player on the planet.
Now in order to earn another shot at hoisting Lord Stanley’s Cup, the Pens will face the Carolina Hurricanes. And among the 20,000 screaming rednecks who just discovered they had a hockey team five years ago will be the Hurricane’s biggest fan, Bill Cowher.
I make no secret of my affection for Coach Cowher. Hell, I named my site in his honor. However, his newfound allegiance to Carolina hockey is a bit perplexing. In 15 years coaching the Steelers, I don’t remember seeing him at one Pens or Pirates game. Now all of a sudden he’s a dyed in the wool hick from North Cackalacky when he in fact grew up in Crafton. Meh. If ringing some dorky siren is his idea of retirement fun, more power to him. Though somebody really should tell him he looks like a jagoff.
I’ll throw my hat in with current coach Mike Tomlin, who has embraced our exciting Pens. Although I won’t lie, it pains me to see a good Yinzer like Cowher root for the enemy. Let’s just hope when all is said and done, he, too, can admit when he’s wrong.
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