Perspective, prayers for OK; and #TribHKY takes at Cooke, Iginla, ‘The Breakdown’ and Pens’ focus.


OTTAWA — The Stanley Cup doesn’t matter that much.

This was my only thought late Monday, when, after talking with one of the Trib editors, I learned of the devastation in Oklahoma.

Fifty-one people died on Monday. Their lives ended, and the lives of their loved ones were forever changed.

Let that simmer, as I did for about 15 minutes on Monday.

I learned of that news late in the day, but into the evening I was still getting emails from Penguins fans about the Game 3 loss to the Senators.

That makes sense. Sports are the distraction. Sports is my livelihood, so I’d be a hypocrite for knocking the people who take sports seriously, even too seriously.

Still, as I read an email early Monday evening from a reader who felt it necessary to use obscenities when sharing his fanatical opinions on Dan Bylsma and Evgeni Malkin, I could not help but wonder if maybe there are moments when sports should not be a distraction.

Maybe paying attention more to everything else would be good for all of us and serve as a necessary reminder that these games that are played, covered and obsessed over are, well, just games.

Life is a bigger, and it ended tragically for too many innocent people on Monday.

My thoughts and prayers are with everybody in Oklahoma – as I hope theirs would be if the situations were flipped, parts of Pittsburgh was in rubble, and the Thunder were only ahead 2-1 in an NBA playoff series.

Anyway, the #TribHKY links…


=   Josh Yohe offers an observation about Matt Cooke, specifically as it pertains to the noise that surrounds him in Canada’s capital city:


= Dejan Kovacevic’s column dares to ask what so many have been thinking. Why exactly did the Penguins trade for Jarome Iginla only to use him like they have?


= A breakdown of the The Breakdown that changed, temporarily, the narrative of this Penguins-Senators series:


= Difficult to mistake Monday was the Penguins’ collective resolve to not let Game 3 mean too much in the long run – at least, the result of Game 3:


= By the way, that was some big-time history that happened here on Sunday night. Blown leads like that in a situation like that just haven’t happened a lot in the NHL:


= Senators players have found their mojo. Yeah, baby, yeah!


= And, finally, notes about the Pens:

Notes about the Sens:


That is all for this morning. Both clubs practice, starting with the Senators at noon.


Go vote. Hug somebody you love before and after. Pray for Oklahoma.