There were the usual handshakes, smiles, jokes and one-liners that accompany the reigning Stanley Cup champion's annual visit to the White House. The team celebrated its latest Stanley Cup victory with a trip to the White House.
Prior to introducing members of the Penguins, Trump praised the deal-making abilities of team co-owner Ron Burkle. Nobody's taking a stand. Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad with pro-communist posts Trump, honor Obama's agreement to release Guantanamo detainee MORE and White House chief of staff John KellyJohn Francis KellyMORE were separating the USA from "chaos". "We are simply honoring our championship and the accomplishments of this group of players over this season or the last two seasons".
Trump lauded the Penguins for their 111-point season a year ago, calling them "a great group of world champions" before he singled out several players, starting with team captain Sidney Crosby, who had insisted leading up to the team's White House visit that "there's absolutely no politics involved" in the decision to attend.
While the team's acceptance of President Donald Trump's invitation has drawn some criticism, the players and coaches have made clear that they are not making a political statement - they're just continuing with tradition. "That's what they are". That's how I kind of grew up playing hockey.
Sullivan also said he would have no issue with players kneeling during the anthem, addressing the other political issue that's spilled into the sport. "We're very respectful of it".
Corker responded on Sunday, tweeting that the White House has become "an adult day care center" under Trump.
Trump has called on National Football League owners to fire players who don't stand for the anthem and urged fans to boycott games in a series of tweets.
"It's not something that gets discussed at the rink", Sullivan said.