Pittsburgh Penguins History: Good Friends, Better Enemies?

Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Under the proposed NHL playoff format the fifth-place Pittsburgh Penguins will battle the twelfth-place Montreal Canadiens, which would pit former International teammates Carey Price and Sidney Crosby against each other.

Once the NHL announced their initial plans for a return to hockey, Pittsburgh Penguins social media blew up with the assertion that the Penguins would not be able to get past Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens.

While the Penguins odds in a series vs. the Canadiens, look pretty good, what does history tell us about the times that Sidney Crosby and Carey Price joined forces to battle International opponents?

Let’s take a look.

2014 Olympic Winter Games, Sochi Russia

The first time the tandem of Crosby and Price joined forces, was in the 2014 Olympics. Price was the undisputed number one goalie for Canada in the tournament, as he appeared in five of six games.

The year 2014 is widely regarded as of the finest year’s in Price’s career and he proved it on the world stage going 5-0 in the tournament. Price allowed three goals and made saves on 103 of 106 shots. Price also earned back-to-back shutouts in the final two games of the tournament to help Canada grab the gold medal.

  • Canada vs. Norway: 3-1 (win)
  • Canada vs. Finland: 2-1 (win)
  • Canada vs. Latvia: 2-1 (win)
  • Canada vs. U.S.A: 1-0 (win)
  • Canada vs. Sweden: 3-0 (win)

At the other end of the ice, Crosby did not have as productive of a tournament as Price did, but was effective when he needed to be.

Crosby managed to put 11 shots on net through six games and finished the tournament with one goal and three points.

While the one goal Crosby scored lacked the dramatics of the 2010 gold medal-winning goal, he did score it in the championship game against Sweden.

2016 World Cup of Hockey, Toronto Ontario

The second time Price and Crosby teamed up for Team Canada was at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey.

Price was still riding the wave of momentum that had been building since 2014 and backstopped Team Canada to championship glory yet again.

Price won five games and posted a goals-against-average of 1.40 with one shutout.

  • Canada vs. Czech Republic: 6-0 (win)
  • Canada vs. U.S.A: 4-2 (win)
  • Canada vs. Russia: 5-3 (win)
  • Canada vs. Europe: 3-1 (win)
  • Canada vs. Europe: 2-1 (win)

Crosby had a much better tournament than the 2010 Olympics, as he scored three goals and 10 points in six games. Crosby also leads the tournament in points (10), assists (7), and Plus/Minus (8).

While we wait to see what the best of five series has in store for us, we can rest assured, that both Crosby and Price will be trying to get their respective teams to the next round and will try to exploit the weaknesses they observed while they were teammates.

Who do you think will get the better of the matchup, between the Montreal Canadiens and Pittsburgh Penguins?