The Official "Here Are My Penguins Fan Credentials"

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The Official "Here Are My Penguins Fan Credentials"

Postby netwolf on Fri Feb 10, 2006 12:56 am

List how/when you started following the team and some of your favorite memories from the time you came on board...

I grew up in rural Washington County. Cable TV was not available there and satellite dishes were still 4 or 5 feet wide and super expensive. I had no idea what hockey even was, until...

I do not recall the exact game, but part way through the 1990-91 season, there was a regular season game against on KDKA-TV2, I think against the North Stars oddly enough. I didn't really understand exactly what I was watching, but I kept it on and thought it was pretty cool. There were a bunch of other kids and a few teachers at my high school that were really into it.

I continued to follow along as best I could (remember, I had broadcast TV and internet access was not well established, if at all then) and as we all know, they won the first Cup the following spring. That cemented my interest and watched every game I could next year and listened to radio when I could not watch.

I saw my first live game in 92-93 against the Red Wings (they lost). I was not in a position to get to live games much until 96-97 and became a season ticket holder in either 1999 or 2000 (it's a blur to me at this point).

I have been lucky enough to be in the arena for some reallt great things: Jagr scoring against the Flyers from his stomach, Ron Francis' 1000th assist, seeing 66 raised to the roof, and being there to see it come down again. I was there to see that puck drop out of the sky at Mario's feet almost as if it was intentionally placed there for him to put in. I was at another Sabres game when he scored directly off a faceoff. I saw Morozov score on his first shot, first shift. I saw Fleury play out of his mind in his rookie debut against LA. I was there for Crosby's debut this year.

And of course, I have been at approximately a week of training camp or more every year it's been held since 99 and "reporting" on what I see because you people seem to have an interest in reading about it. You sick freaks! :wink:

Hockey is a huge part of my life now. I met my wife through this board and the first time I ever saw her was at Mellon Arena. :D

I never played any sports in school, but after getting into hockey, I taught myself to skate (maybe that's why I'm not that good - bad teacher!) on inlines so I could play in some inline hockey leagues and I eventually moved on to ice hockey and I'm playing at least once a week now.

I'm Eric and I love hockey. 8)
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Postby Stevens25 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 1:07 am

I never was into hockey that much but my brother was and he got me watching the Pens. I "officially" became a fan right before the 1989-90 season. I remember listening to that Pens final game that year on the radio(when they lost in overtime to Buffalo). Ever since then I became a fanatic. I have gone to at lease 2-5 games a year since then. I even started playing street,deck and ice hockey in the late 80's all the way up till' today. I even won the Penguin cup and State Title in 1994 while playing for Greensburg Central Catholic. I got to play at the Civic(Mellon)Arena!!
I have alot of memories,but I love and miss the early 90's so much. Not because the Pens won Cups,but because they were so good and so fun to watch. My favorite players are Kevin Stevens and Mario Lemieux. Those guys were magic together! 8)

Postby prez41 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 10:40 am

I started watching the Pens during the first cup year (I know - bandwagon fan). My favorite memory was Jim Paek scoring a goal in game 6 of the Finals against the Stars. I have no idea why. That was the first time in my memorable lifetime a local team had won a championship. I was never a rabid hockey fan. I would watch games when I could, but it was never an event to me. For some reason, my interest peaked in hockey during the 03-04 season. Even though the Pens were terrible, the game just really caught on for me. I don't get to go to many games, but I watch or listen to as many as possible. Even with as bad as this season has gone, I can't keep away from the games.
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Postby ExPatriatePen on Fri Feb 10, 2006 11:43 am

First memory of hockey was an AHL Hockey Puck from the Pittsburgh Hornets that was always laying around the house when I was just a toddler. The puck had been used in a game at the Old Duquesne Gardens at a former trolley barn at 110 n. craig St in Oakland where the Hornets played until 1956.

My mother was sitting in seats that season , pregnant with me, when the puck nearly hit her (The guy in front of her caught it).

Fast forward to 1970. As a thirteen yearold I went to visit friends of my parents in Edgewood. The kids and i walked over the a large house on the next block and played hockey in the driveway. Turns out it was Red Kelly's house (Then coach of the Pens).

That year I started listening to my parents powerful AM radio at night and could clearly pick up KMOX out of St. Louis. The Plager brothers were the scourage of the NHL.

About that same time I started to follow the Pens and was disappointed when they dropped the 1975 quarter final playoff series to the Isles in game 7.

The next year they filed for bankruptcy (The first time) and I went into the Service.

After returning to Pittsburgh in 1980 I half heartedly followed hockey but in 1982 I was given an opportunity to purchase a Pittsburgh Spirit (MISL) Penguins (NHL) combination season ticket package. (Seats were $9.50 each for third row off the Ice next to the vistors runway) I bought the package that year and cheered my team on to a 18 win season that was the worst of any team ever in the NHL.

Late that year I was commuting home after a long night in the office when I encountered a horrible traffic jam on the Parkway West near Carnegie. Turns out I'd stumbled on the accident that killed Baz Bastein.

I held seson tickets through the 1995 season and ended up selling most of them because I could no longer afford to spend > $200 for two seats, and parking 42 times a year.

In 1996 I left Pittsburgh and have followed the Pens via TV and the Internet ever since.
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Postby Defence21 on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:11 pm

This is tough, as there was no defining moment for me.

At some point in late 1991 or early 1992, a friend's family took me to a Johnstown Chiefs game. Being just 8 years old, I hadn't heard of hockey before, so the experience was all new.

Soon enough, the Penguins made the playoffs and my mother thought it would be fun to watch the games. Once they made it to the finals, she allowed my sister and I to stay awake to watch the full games, even on school nights.

Though I didn't know much about the sport at the time -- I thought Jaromir Jagr was a girl because he had long hair -- I was enamored by the excitement.

I can't say I was hooked, though, at that point. It took several years before I considered myself a true fan. At age 10, I received an away Jagr jersey from "Santa Claus."

Throughout my middle and high school days, I followed the Penguins by watching bits and pieces of the games and following the news and standings. Once I hit my senior year of high school, I became a true fan. I watched every game from start to finish.

I remain that way to this day.
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Postby Jamie on Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:19 pm

I started watching in 1989. There was no specific event that caused me to watch. I always liked the contact sports. I Played football in middle and high school, hockey was not on the curriculum then. I was watching the PENS play, I forget who it was. Lemieux really stood out on the ice, head and shoulders above the rest of the players. I was 14 years old at the time, and I remember thinking, no one can stop this guy. From that day on I became a passionate hockey fan. I would never miss a game on TV, in which the PENS were playing and I recieved the broadcast.

Watching Mario through the years taught me alot about life. Especially having to watch Mario battle his health problems, I learned to look at life in a whole new manner. Alot of people call me weird when I say this, but I truly believe that in a small way, watching Mario contributed to the person that I am today. Mario Lemieux has affected the lives of so many people in positive way. I am proud to say that I am one of those people. I will always and forever have a soft spot in my heart for Mario Lemieux.
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Postby Tico Rick on Fri Feb 10, 2006 8:20 pm

I started following the Pens in 1967, when a Penguin moved next door to me. My favorite early memory was watching Al Smith take on Bob Plager in a fight at center ice. My brother and I had 20-game-plan seats in the first row of C-32, $50 each for the full twenty games. Those were the days.

I also saw Ken Dryden play his first NHL game, a 5-2 Canadiens victory, if I recall correctly.

Having lived through the dark days, I have to laugh when I read posts pondering whether this team with Crosby and Fleury is the worst Penguin team over. The team has a bright future; unfortunately it may not be in Pittsburgh.
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Postby dman66 on Sat Feb 11, 2006 12:16 am

i remember the cup years, but didnt really follow. the first time i started paying attention was 93. i was 6 at the time. i followed because shawn mceachern had the same name as me. i watched the playoffs. i saw the goal, scored by the man whose name i will not speak of. after that, i bawled my eyes out, because i realized they wouldnt win the cup. ever since then, i've been hooked. i love hockey, and i love the pens.
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I think I got credentials

Postby guiner on Sat Feb 11, 2006 1:08 am

I started watching hockey during the Islanders dynasty years off the WOR feed to the Pittsburgh area. I liked the Pens, watched the Pens, but the Isles at the time, were the ****. I didn't get to go to many games, but whenever we did, we could sit anywhere. There were usually only 3-5 thousand fans at the game. You could move anywhere. There was a fat guy who did a neat jig up in the balcony to a song that they played for him and everyone looked forward too... because of that jig he jigged.

Dave Burrows' family and ours were friends. We went up to stay with them in Toronto once, had a neat cornboil dinner out on a beautiful lake home of there's. Dave was as quite and solid off ice as he was on the ice.

I was a teenager, when the post-gazette wrote about a young phenom who at age 16 was tearing up the Q. I tumbtacked that article against my wall and waited 2 years hoping he would raise us from misery. 2 years worth of expectation, amazingly realized with a first shift, first shot goal. He had arrived as promised.

As the first cup finals series came around, I had moved out to Bedford, PA. Having a few years earlier graduated from Penn State. I was a marketing manager for a toy company and was lucky to get SWEET comp tickets for one of the final's game against the North Stars. I called up my dad and asked him "do you think you can get us some tickets" He was like, I don't think so, but I was like "its ok dad, I got us covered!!". It meant a lot to me. My dad had taken me to countless rinks and practices through my Bethel Park hockey playing days. The best moment of the game, we were just off our goalies left side, about 5 rows back, Mario broke up ice, in the famous play were he split the two defenders. All we could see was Mario disappearing as the two Stars players folded behind him, Mario falling to the left and the Igloo EXPLODED!!!!

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