PITTSBURGH - The Pittsburgh Penguins still have a chance to win the NHL's Eastern Conference, which is pretty impressive.
Considering they've been without Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jordan Staal for large portions of the season, they could be excused for falling short of the eight-team playoff field.
Instead, they have the opportunity to finish on top.
That would guarantee them home ice through three rounds of playoffs, but what does that really mean?
The Penguins have won their three Stanley Cup titles on the road.
They lost Game Seven at home to Montreal last season.
The biggest impact would come at the bank.
In the old days, each playoff game was worth about $1 million in gate receipts and ancillary income.
Considering the Penguins have a bigger capacity at Consol Energy Center, and a better cut of concessions and parking, that figure is significantly higher now than ever before.
Win a couple of rounds in the playoffs, and it could be an extra $10 million for a team that's already profitable.
It would be nice to hang a new championship banner from the rafters of the new building in its first year.
It would be just as enjoyable to take that extra money to the bank.
Give the Penguins credit for stepping up and spending some extra money at the NHL trade deadline.
Malkin's season-ending knee injury gave the Penguins extra space under the salary cap, and they assumed the $1.2 million remaining on Alex Kovalev's contract when they acquired him from Ottawa.
That's extra money they didn't have to spend.
Here's a Steelers' draft issue to ponder.
Do they spend a pick on a kicker in a draft that is supposed to have a lot of kicking talent?
The Steelers were fine with Shaun Suisham after Jeff Reed was cut during the season. But the feeling lingers that Suisham was a stopgap in the Steelers' minds.
The baseball contest opens officially at 3 p.m. this afternoon on my blog at altoonamirror.com.
Stop over there for details. It's easy to enter and doesn't cost a thing. Give it a shot and you may claim the prize.
Mehno can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org