For the second year in a row — and the third time in nine years — the Pittsburgh Penguins were taking part in a championship parade on Wednesday afternoon.
The city of Pittsburgh estimated (perhaps somewhat generously) that as many as 650,000 people showed up for the victory celebration that went through the downtown streets before ending at Point State Park, right at the confluence of the cities three rivers.
The celebration included goalies Matt Murray and Marc-Andre Fleury lifting the Stanley Cup together (likely for the last time as Fleury is not expected to not be back next season), a lot of screaming, Penguins coach Mike Sullivan calling for a “three-peat” and Matt Cullen‘s kids cutting apart Ron Hainsey‘s clothes.
Here are some of the highlights…
One highlight that did not make that clip was Cullen’s kids helping turning Hainsey’s blue jeans into what was almost certainly an awkward pair of jean shorts.
With temperatures nearing 90 degrees on the day he was probably the only player on the team that started the day in something other than shorts. Fortunately for him (or unfortunately depending on your style opinions) the Cullen kids were there to help him out.
Speaking of Cullen, every time his name was mentioned at the parade a “one more year” chant would break out as fans (and his teammates) tried to convince him to return next season. The 40-year-old Cullen proved to be a valuable role player on each of the past two Cup-winning teams.
At their parade one year ago coach Mike Sullivan ended his speech by saying “let’s do this again next year.”
He offered a similar closing on Wednesday.
“On behalf of the team, we just want to thank you guys,” Sullivan said, via the Post-Gazette. “We think we’ve got a unique fan base. Everybody talked about Nashville through those finals. They’ve got nothing on Pittsburgh, I’ll tell you that. I said a little something last year, seeing if we could do this again. I wonder if we could repeat or three-peat, should I say.”