PITTSBURGH — Sidney Crosby was honored by the Pittsburgh Penguins in a ceremony before playing his 1,000th NHL game Saturday.
Before facing the New York Islanders at PPG Paints Arena, the 33-year-old center gave his girlfriend, Kathy, a bouquet of roses and watched a highlight video featuring some of the best moments from his 16 NHL seasons.
The 33-year-old captain’s parents, Troy and Trina, and sister, Taylor, spoke before the game.
Penguins co-owner Mario Lemeiux recorded a heartfelt video message for Crosby.
“I feel very fortunate that I had the opportunity to play with you and watch your career over the last 15 years,” Lemieux said. “It’s been amazing. Enjoy tonight. Way to go, Sid.”
Forward Evgeni Malkin and defenseman Kris Letang also recorded videos.
“You’re an amazing player,” Malkin said. “I want to see more goals for you, more points, more games, and of course, more [Stanley] Cups.”
Malkin and Letang presented Crosby with a mosaic made of photos from each of Crosby’s 1,000 games, and a silver hockey stick.
Former teammate and Vegas Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury sent a message to Crosby.
Many stars around the league sent congratulatory videos as well, including Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid and Boston Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron.
Crosby is the first player ever to play 1,000 games for the Penguins. Malkin is second in Pittsburgh’s history with 923 games played, followed by Lemieux with 915.
The three-time Stanley Cup champion is second in Penguins history with 468 goals, 808 assists and 1,276 points. Crosby trails Lemieux (690 goals, 1,033 assists and 1,723 points) in each category.
Crosby became the 350th player, and 25th active, to reach 1,000 NHL games.
Each of Crosby’s teammates wore his jersey during pregame warmups.
The Penguins also took part in one of their captain’s traditions, dropping to a knee to re-tie their skates when he did midway through warmups.
Crosby, who was gifted a Rolex watch in the locker room before the game, was also celebrated away from the arena, with the city of Pittsburgh declaring Feb. 20, 2021, “Sidney Crosby Day.”
“Now, therefore be it resolved, that the Mayor and City Council do herby congratulate and salute Mr. Sidney Crosby for this most remarkable accomplishment, thanking him for his over 15 years of service to the Pittsburgh Penguins and the greater Pittsburgh community,” read a proclamation signed by Pittsburgh mayor Bill Peduto.