Devils goaltender and former Penguin Johan Hedberg paid his first visit to his old team's new digs last night. Prior to the game, "Moose" offered his observations of Consol Energy Center:
You said the first thing you notice about the Civic/Mellon Arena was the smell. What's the first thing you noticed at Consol Energy Center?
"I think its the colors with the chairs. The black and gold. It doesn't have the same character as the old building obviously. Nothing can do that when you do something brand new. It's a bit different."
What was it like entering this building for the first time after entering Gate 2 of Civic/Mellon Arena for years?
"We didn't even know where to get in. We were searching for doors. It's a bit fun and it's a bit sad."
You probably don't miss the visiting room at the Civic/Mellon Arena.
"No, that wasn't very nice. "
Is there anything that stands out on the ice with Consol Energy Center?
"Looks to me like they tried to copy the old rink. There's a little different corners here than other rinks. If you throw it into the end boards, it bounces towards the net."
During your time with the Penguins, the struggle to secure funding and planning for the new arena was ongoing. Is it hard to see Consol Energy Center as a reality given how bleak those times looked?
"I think that's been a theme for the Penguins. Whenever they needed a savior, there was one coming. Mario (Lemieux) coming in, saving it a few times. I think w hen Crosby came in, it turned this whole franchise around. It's a great place for hockey to be."(Photo: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)