Expressing regret, Penguins coach Mike Sullivan pens letter thanking fans | TribLIVE.com
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Tim Benz
Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan has his final meeting of the season with the media at the NHL hockey team's practice facility in Cranberry, Wednesday, May 9, 2018.

Apparently, Penguins coach Mike Sullivan is making the most of the extra time on his hands.

Having yet to be out of the playoffs before the middle of June as the team’s bench boss over his first two seasons, Sullivan used some spare moments to pen a letter to Penguins fans on the team’s website .

It’s not a quick thank-you note, either. It’s almost a more cathartic essay chronicling how hard the team tried to win a third straight Stanley Cup and how bitter the disappointment of failing is.

As you might expect, a lot of the letter is a chapter and verse, player-by-player acknowledgement of the good things they did. That carries over to staff and management, too.

He also thanks the fans for their support and their “dignity and grace” toward the players in the wake of the Game 6 loss to the Capitals.

Sullivan says that, at times, he hates losing more than he enjoys winning, which is evident from his tone — his regret over not getting further in the playoffs this year.

Along the way, Sullivan coach quotes Vince Lombardi.

“If we chase perfection, we may catch excellence.”

Much of the message was written to assure Penguins fans that the quest for more championships is not over, and the club isn’t satisfied having won two titles in 2016 and 2017. They will be looking for more.

However, Sullivan says he’ll get over the disappointment of 2018 in due time with a cigar and a Guinness on his back porch.

Sounds like he may need to pour more than one. Think Sully is skilled enough to pour one of those shamrocks in his Guinness foam before he drinks it?

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