In 2009, the Pittsburgh Penguins were on top of the hockey world. They had just edged the Detroit Red Wings in a thrilling, seven-game series to take home the Stanley Cup for the first time in 17 years, and they had done so just 12 months after falling to those same Wings in a similarly entertaining championship tilt.
After years of struggling, they had amassed some top picks, turned those picks into star players and fought their way all the way to the title. The stage was set for a pretty glorious run.
Of course, things rarely ever go exactly according to plan. Now it’s 2015 and the Pens are still looking for their second Cup outside of the Mario Lemieux Era. In fact, they haven’t even made it out of the Eastern Conference in the last six years. This past season, they were gone after just five playoff games.
Despite some great lineups on paper, they’ve repeatedly come up short of the ultimate goal — a goal that many feel has been attainable if they’d simply play up to their potential. So what do they do going forward? Here are four quick rules they may want to follow…