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A look at the friendship between Sidney Crosby and Jack Johnson | TribLIVE.com
Breakfast With Benz

A look at the friendship between Sidney Crosby and Jack Johnson

Tim Benz
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COLUMBUS, OH - APRIL 18: Jack Johnson #7 of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins battle for control of the puck in Game Four of the Eastern Conference First Round during the 2017 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on April 18, 2017 at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. Columbus defeated Pittsburgh 5-4. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
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OTTAWA, ONT - JULY 30: (L-R) First overall draft pick Sidney Crosby of the Pittsburgh Penguins and third overall draft pick Jack Johnson of the Carolina Hurricanes pose for a portrait during the 2005 National Hockey League Draft on July 30, 2005 at the Westin Hotel in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images for NHL)
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OTTAWA, ONT - JULY 29: National Hockey League prospects, Jack Johnson (L) and Sidney Crosby skate with young kids during the Reebok hockey top prospects clinic at the Bell Sensplex in Ottawa, Canada on July 29, 2005. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

The reason I’m excited about the prospect of Jack Johnson becoming a Pittsburgh Penguin is that we can finally stop asking the question: “Hey, do you think that the Penguins may get Jack Johnson? He and Sid are friends, you know!”

Yes. Yes. I’m well aware.

Johnson has been rumored as a future Penguin for so long now, I would hope that he already has his future home picked out somewhere in Western Pennsylvania.

Especially since now it appears his arrival is likely to happen.

Honestly, “connect-the-dots” trade/free agency rumors between Johnson and Pittsburgh have gone back for years because of the defenseman’s friendship with Penguins captain Sidney Crosby.

The two were high school teammates at Shattuck-St. Mary’s boarding school in Minnesota. It sounds like their camaraderie was forged from a baseball fight as much as it was any hockey skirmishes.

The two kids got drafted the same year. That was 2005 in Ottawa, where this video of the roommates was taken.

Crosby went No. 1 overall to the Penguins. Johnson was taken by Jim Rutherford and Carolina.

He went to the University of Michigan instead while Crosby went straight to the NHL. Eventually, Rutherford traded Johnson’s draft rights to Los Angeles, where Johnson played the first six years of his career.

Since then, their on-ice moves have improved tremendously. And hopefully their off-ice moves got better, too.

“I’m Jack Johnson. That’s Sidney Crosby.”

“Oh. Cool.”

“Well, nice meeting you guys.”

Smooth boys. Smooth indeed. The moment I saw that, I flashed back to this.

My God. If their friendship could sustain that headlong voyage into an iceberg, they are truly in it for thick and thin.

Maybe they aren’t as close as we make it out to be. If Sid liked Johnson more, he wouldn’t have let his buddy twist in the wind like that. That was painful.

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