The Pittsburgh Penguins clinched the Stanley Cup Final last night at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville after defeating the Predators, 2-0. The Penguins victory leaves them as the first team to win back-to-back Stanley Cups in nearly two decades. Six USA Hockey National Team Development Program alumni were a part of the history this season.
Former NTDPers Bryan Rust (2008-10/Pontiac, Mich.), Kevin Porter (2002-04/Detroit, Mich.), Ian Cole (2005-07/Ann Arbor, Mich.) and Phil Kessel (2003-05/Madison, Wis.) each earned their second Stanley Cup after helping guide the Penguins to the 2016 championship a year ago.
Kessel ranked third on the team in points this postseason with 23 (8-15), while Rust and Cole each tallied nine points in these playoffs to help the Penguins.
After playing over 900 NHL games with six different teams, Ron Hainsey (1997-99/Bolton, Conn.) hoisted the Cup for the first time. Rounding out the six alumni, David Warsofsky (2007-08/N. Marshfield, Mass.) will also have his name engraved on the cup. This is his first Stanley Cup title.