Pittsburgh Penguins Put Politics Aside, Accept White House Invite

Not everything in sports has to be about partisan politics. Imagine that.

With all the hysteria wracking the sports world about "taking a knee" and protesting President Trump, it's a refreshing change when a team does the classy thing and sets partisan politics aside.

The Pittsburgh Penguins, consecutive two-time Stanley Cup winners, were invited by President Trump to visit the White House, and despite the pressure from some fans and some other athletes to make a social justice statement, the team has accepted the invitation.

Here is a statement about it on the teams website:

The Pittsburgh Penguins respect the institution of the Office of the President, and the long tradition of championship teams visiting the White House. We attended White House ceremonies after previous championships - touring the historic building and visiting briefly with Presidents George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama - and have accepted an invitation to attend again this year.

Any agreement or disagreement with a president's politics, policies or agenda can be expressed in other ways. However, we very much respect the rights of other individuals and groups to express themselves as they see fit.

"It's a great honor for us to be invited there,'' said Penguin star Sidney Crosby. "Everyone's got the right to go or not to go,'' he added. "But we've been invited and we accepted the invitation. I don't think you have to read into it any more than that.''

The Penguins had previously visited the White House during the presidencies of George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama.

"I think we all really enjoyed it last year, being able to see something that not everyone gets to see, and to be able to experience the White House,'' said Penguin forward Bryan Rust. "I think for us, as an organization, we relish the opportunity, and it's something we get to do because we are champions, and we're going to make the most of it.''

Good for them.