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Penguins See Ghosts of Christmas Past and Future with Chicago, LA

The Pittsburgh Penguins must be seeing Charles Dicken’s ghosts with Stanley Cup Winners, now struggling Chicago and LA

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Still checking with Pittsburgh Penguins sources to verify this, but thought it was worth passing along.

Sidney Crosby apparently had a fitful night Wednesday. He had a lot on his mind. The Pittsburgh Penguins’ dads’ trip was winding down, and the team had split its two games with the papas watching, including Wednesday’s 6-3 loss at Chicago.

Just as Crosby was drifting off, he was startled by the sound of someone in his room. “Hey Sid,” came a voice that was unmistakably that of longtime buddy and former teammate Max Talbot.

“What are you doing here?” Crosby demanded.

“Yeah, he’s supposed to be playing in Russia,” came another voice, and Crosby looked and could barely make out the face of another former teammate, Pascal Dupuis.

This was getting weird. Crosby reached to turn on a light, but just as it clicked, he found himself floating, Talbot and Dupuis on each side of him, with something shiny below them.

It was the Stanley Cup.

The three – Talbot, one of the heroes of the Penguins’ 2009 Cup run; Dupuis, a longtime linemate of Crosby’s and another member of the ’09 champion team; and Crosby, who has captained the Penguins to Cups in ’09, ’16 and ’17 – studied the huge trophy.

The panels featuring those three Penguins teams were brighter than the others, and they all looked at their names.

Five other team panels were a little brighter than others – the three Cups won by Chicago and the two won by Los Angeles since 2009. The spot where the 2019 will go, they noticed, was a black hole.

Suddenly, it occurred to Crosby that his buddies were there as the spirits of Christmas present. It also occurred to him that he must be dreaming, and he decided to just go with it.

“Look where the Blackhawks and Kings are now, the last two teams in the league,” Talbot said.

“Yeah, everyone is saying their glory days are over,” Dupuis added.

“Well, we just lost to Chicago, and we play Los Angeles Saturday,” Crosby said. “But I don’t think the Penguins’ window is shut. We still have good players. We can win more Cups. Right, guys?”

But Talbot and Dupuis were gone, and Crosby was back in his room.

“Weird dream,” Crosby thought. “Scared the dickens out of me.”

Determined to get some quality sleep before morning, even though the Penguins didn’t practice Thursday, Crosby tried to shake off the dream.

Before he could, he heard another voice. “Mr. Crosby?” It was a timid teenaged boy. His face was hard to make out. He was wearing a plain black hockey helmet.

“I’m going to be your teammate before you retire,” the boy said.

“Great,” Crosby thought, feeling grumpy. “A spirit of Christmas future.”

He reached for the light again, wanting to get on with things, and he was again floating above the Cup. The boy was keeping his distance but just pointed at the trophy.

Crosby looked, and noticed the bands with the carved names were different. The panels honoring the Penguins were closer to the chalice at the top. He could see new additions, years well into the future. But he couldn’t make out any of the team names or individual names.

“So you’re not going to show me whether the Penguins win more Cups with me and Geno and Tanger and the others? We don’t have to be like Chicago and Los Angeles, eh?” Crosby asked, but the boy was gone. His voice, though, came through with one last message: “The future is yet to be determined. You have to earn it.”

The next thing Crosby knew, it was morning. The superstitious side of him was a little spooked by the dreams, but mostly he was annoyed that they kept him from getting a good night’s sleep.

And then he spotted, in the corner of the room, a plain black hockey helmet that had not been there before.

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Shelly is the newest columnist and reporter for Pittsburgh Hockey Now. She was a Penguins beat writer for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and remains a contributor to The Hockey News. Catch her on Twitter @_shellyanderson

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