Win for the "Home" Team!

So Sunday was the highly-anticipated Pens-Caps showdown, at least for my household. We managed to secure some last-minute seats thanks to a timely cancellation and firmly planted our Penguin-bedecked selves squarely in Section 428.

Penguin fan central.

Though our section was admittedly more tame than that of 423-425 – sections we’ve sat in previous times we’ve journeyed to these intense rivalry games – it was still wonderful to behold.

See, Penguin fans since time began – ok, since our continual playoff clashes in the ’90s – have always made it a point to flood the MCI/Verizon Center to support our flightless birds of black-n-gold. Sunday was no exception. The idea of making the rival arena our ‘temporary home’ is always appealing. We’re like a virus, after all. Albeit a black-n-gold one.

Though I will admit, the playoff possibilities have energized Cap fans to actually, you know, show up for these games now. No longer do our “Let’s Go Pens!” chants dominate the arena. Still, from where we sat, it was like being at the Mellon Arena all over again….though decidedly more updated, with a nicer scoreboard and bigger sightlines and…

Ok, fine. I’m jealous. Until the ‘guins get their new arena, that is.

Still, I’ve always loved Pens/Caps games. The energy both sides bring to the game is just phenomenal. And wonderfully respectful. I mean, there are grumpy drunks on both sides of the fence, but at least the attacks on each other remain in the verbal realm. No need for either of us to mimic Philly fans, after all. (No offense, Philly readers. But, well, you know.)

The game was electric. Ovechkin, Semin, Crosby and Malkin were all spectacular. And for it to be decided by Backstrom’s errant shot…well, that’s the breaks in hockey. I was, at least, looking forward to an intense OT period and hopefully, a successful shootout afterwards. Though I can live with the actual outcome, too.

Needless to say, though, I do hope the Capitals can pull it together for the playoffs this year. Their trades at the deadline were magnificent, Ovie’s in top form… Yeah, I can honestly say I’d love to see the Caps get into the second round at least.

Because then they’ll face the Penguins. And oh, what a series THAT will be. So never fear, Cap fans – I’ll be rooting for you for the final three games I have tickets for (Atlanta, Boston, Tampa).

Selfish? Of course! After all, I *am* a Penguins fan.

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