Boudreau on Penguins' Cup win: I couldn't bring myself to cheer for them

June, 17, 2009

On my way to the airport to catch a flight to Las Vegas for the NHL awards and NHL Players' Association meetings this week, but had a few minutes to chat today with Washington Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau.

Aside from the comments he gave me for an Alex Ovechkin piece (check out the site Thursday!), I couldn't resist asking Boudreau about watching the rival Pittsburgh Penguins raise Lord Stanley's mug. Let's just say he wasn't cheering for Pittsburgh.

"The rivalry is pretty heated between the two teams, so normally you always want the team that beats you to win the Cup so you can say, 'Hey, we did great. The only team that beat us was the team that won it all,'" Boudreau told "But it was really a hard time cheering for them. Now that they've won, it's definitely a motivating factor for me with the team. But I was still hoping for Detroit. I couldn't bring myself to cheer for Pittsburgh. But since they won, I may as well use it."

Boudreau's cell phone was buzzing last Friday night after Sidney Crosby put the big silver trophy over his head.

"Without a word of a lie, I had half a dozen guys [players] text me within 20 minutes of Game 7," said Boudreau. "They were so mad. I talked to Alex [Ovechkin] and Mike [Green] last night and they couldn't bring themselves to watch it because it was so upsetting for them.

"I think that's the kind of attitude that teams on the rise achieve. They're going to be really hungry. I'm sitting here in my office right now going over stuff because I want to get going again."

Anyone for a Caps-Pens rematch next spring? Sign me up.

Pierre LeBrun

ESPN Senior Writer


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