The following is an NHLPens.com twist on ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas:
‘Twas the night before Christmas, the whole scene was set,
Not a player would be shooting, a puck at the net;
The sticks were all stacked by the locker room with care,
All prepped for the Caps who soon would be there;
Pens’ fans were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of Lord Stanley danced in their heads;
And Shero still shopping, and worried about cap,
Laid the Wingers list down for a brief Christmas nap,
When down at the rink there arose such a clatter,
Coach Therrien rose to see what was the matter.
Down to the Arena he drove like a flash,
Ran past the Zamboni, nearly fell on his ass.
The lights shining bright on the fresh sheet of ice,
Gave way to a scene that was really quite nice,
When, what to his sleep-blurried eyes should appear,
All the Pens’ players playing, dressed up in their gear,
With a speedy young center, so lively and quick,
Determined to score, and to get the hat trick.
More rapid than eagles the Pens’ players came,
Coach Therrien shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, Crosby! now, Malkin! now, Staal all go home!
Now Sykora! Ruutu, Roberts, Malone!
Get off of the rink! Get out of your gear!
Go get some rest because Christmas is here!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
All ’round the rink every last player flew,
Determined to skate ’til their practice was through.
And then, getting louder, and louder still yet,
He heard sounds of pucks hitting backs of the net.
He thought for a moment, fore turning around,
This team filled with talent could soon be Cup bound.
He looked at the ground and his countenance dropped,
And just for a moment I think his heart stopped;
For at that very moment one thing became clear,
It wasn’t the coach that brought the team here.
Despite all his tinkering, the line changes many,
And sitting the veterans and youngsters a-plenty;
It wasn’t the system he pushed from the start,
‘Twas the will of the players and size of their heart;
Crosby is focused, and driven, and strong,
And Malkin can light up the lamp all night long;
And Staal, though a slumping young sophomore may be,
Can still skate in circles around you and me.
Malone found a home beside Army on wing,
Playing with Crosby’s a beautiful thing;
Gonch keeps on putting up points every night,
And Georges, the protector, throws in with a fight!
Tyler K. and Letang with smiles on their face,
These rookies are flying all over the place;
If Christensen, Roberts, Sykora and Eaton,
Keep playing like that, many teams will be beaten;
With Fleury, Sabourin or Conklin in net,
The defense finally clicking, the better they’ll get;
On defense, Whitney, Orpik, Scuds and Sydor,
Have all shown they’re able to slam shut the door;
So Therrien shrugged as he left in dismay,
As he realized a coach can just coach, and can’t play;
And I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.”