The days of the Penguins playing in the Igloo are numbered.
3 games for sure...1 in the regular season...beyond that, we won't know until we see what kind of playoff team we have this year.
Tonight IS the last regular season game in the "old barn".
Mellon Arena, formerly, the Civic Arena, has been around since 1961. In 1967 the Penguins started playing there, and if it wasn't for design of the arena itself, the team would have likely been called something else entirely. There's a great Yahoo article here:
I haven't been to see many games at the Arena in recent years...raising two kids and dealing with the bad economy has made that something I really can't afford very often.
For me, the best Penguins memory was from way back in 1991. It was March 21st, a game against the Rangers where we trailed but tied it late. In OT we got a lucky bounce off the back boards and Kevin Stevens' shot just made it over the goal line for the 5-4 win.
It felt like the roof came off that night.
The Penguins moved into first place in the Patrick Division...on their way to their first ever division title...and of course, first ever Stanley Cup Championship.
It was a special time as Pens fan. You could almost feel the years of frustration being lifted out of the building that night. I'm glad I was there for it.
Figured I would add a couple more arena highlights here...
One guy that won't be there tonight for the ceremony...but should be:
And of course, this video says it all: