Had a realization the other day that one member of the Penguins 2009 Stanley Cup champion will be hoisting the Cup again this season no matter what. There’s only three teams remaining and Brooks Orpik, Marc-Andre Fleury and Chris Kunitz are split up among each of them.
It hasn’t even been a decade, but here’s where that team is. (Going off at least playing 1 playoff game with the Pens in ‘09)
Still playing in the NHL
Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby, Jordan Staal, Orpik, Kunitz, Fleury, Kris Letang, Alex Goligoski
Just eight players still remain in the big league. Which, granted it has been almost a decade and careers move fast, but man. By that token, in a salary cap world it’s pretty remarkable that the “Pittsburgh 5” were able to stick around so long and win three Cups together.
Max Talbot (KHL): The Superstar recently signed a multi-year deal with Yaroslavl of the KHL and is expected back there in 2018-19 for his 3rd KHL season. Malkin says that Talbot texts him funny things in Russian which I would pay to watch Geno’s reaction to. Max was also in the house for Game 4 against the Caps to watch the final Pens win of the season this year.
In the NHL, but not playing:
Bill Guerin: currently assistant GM for the Pens, appears to be trending upwards to be a future general manager in the NHL either Pittsburgh or elsewhere
Sergei Gonchar: performing well as a full-fledged assistant coach of the Pens
Hal Gill: Radio analyst with the Nashville Predators
Tyler Kennedy: doing work with the Pens as an alumni and community guy, also has a hockey school to help kids out on the ice.
Ruslan Fedotenko: Finished up with the Iowa Wild in the AHL during the 2015-16 season after trying to make a comeback.
Petr Sykora: Wrapped up a career spanning 1000+ NHL games in Switzerland in 2013.
Pascal Dupuis: Had some TV opportunities but is currently relishing being a Hockey Dad and family man after a medically-induced retirement
Miroslav Satan: Finished his career in the KHL in 2014, was the general manager of “Team Europe” the surprising group of players in the World Cup of Hockey who placed 2nd in September 2016
Matt Cooke: His playing days ended in 2015 with the Minnesota Wild, and he’s faded out of view big time since then.
Craig Adams: finished up as a Penguin, believe it or not, retiring after the 2014-15 season. Isn’t really that long ago, but seems like a life-time ago, doesn’t it? Anyways, a 2016 article mentions he has a job at a financial firm in Boston, just as you would probably expect the Harvard man to stay busy.
Mark Eaton: The only native Delawar-ian (?) to play in the NHL ended his career with the Pens in 2013 and recently went in that state’s sport hall of fame.
Phillipe Boucher: The ‘09 season was his last as a player. He served as the GM/Head coach for the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL from 2013-17 but wasn’t the coach this season.
Rob Scuderi: The ending of his career had the black cloud of the 4 year contract the Pens signed him to in 2013, which he ended up finishing out in the AHL of the Kings organization in 2016-17. A shame, and hopefully in time that will fade and his heroics from ‘09 as “The Piece” will be remembered more commonly by Pens fans.
The ‘09 Pens have already had a quick reunion during the team’s 50th anniversary celebrations last season. There will be many more to come in future, but until then you can bet all of the guys will be right there with all the Pens fans to see which one of Orpik, Kunitz or Fleury will be able to add another ring to their illustrious careers.