Crosby leads Penguins to first Stanley Cup since 2009

Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:01am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - The Pittsburgh Penguins will once again have to claim an extra piece of baggage when they return home with the National Hockey League's Stanley Cup following a 3-1 win over the San Jose Sharks on Sunday.

After failing to clinch the title at home on Thursday, the Penguins returned to San Jose with a 3-2 series lead and used a clinical display of hockey to ensure the championship would not require a decisive seventh game.

It marked the fourth time in franchise history that the Penguins won the coveted Stanley Cup but just like the previous three (1991, 1992 and 2009) they had to celebrate on the road.

Captain Sidney Crosby had two assists in the championship-clinching game, including one on Kris Letang's game-winning goal, and was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player during the Stanley Cup playoffs.

"I wasn't really thinking about '09 that much, I was just thinking about how hard it was to get to this point and just trying to enjoy every second of it," said Crosby.

"It's not easy to get here and having won seven years ago at a young age you probably take it for granted a little bit. You don't think you do at the time."

The fact that the Cup clincher came on the road did not dull the party as Penguins players charged off the bench and mobbed rookie goalie Matt Murray while throwing their gloves and sticks into the air in a wild and boyish celebration.

Murray made 18 saves and only faced two shots in the third period. His 15 playoff wins by a rookie equals a Stanley Cup playoffs record.

As captain, Crosby was first to hoist the Cup and then passed it off to injured teammate Trevor Daley, who had been knocked out of the playoffs with a broken ankle.   Continued...

 
Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby (C) and his teammates pose for a team photo with the Stanley Cup after defeating the San Jose Sharks in game six of the 2016 Stanley Cup Final at SAP Center at San Jose.  Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports - RTX2FV3W