Pittsburgh locked up young talent Sidney Crosby, hockey's reigning MVP, through 2013, with a contract extension that will pay $8.7 million per year starting in 2008. That figure was carefully chosen; Crosby's team number is 87. The Penguins also recently signed defenseman Ryan Whitney to an extension, shoring up their formidable array of young talent.
Crosby led his team to an historic 47-point turnaround from a miserable 2005-06 season, only for inexperienced Pittsburgh to fall to eventual Eastern Conference champions Ottawa. The Nova Scotia native expects the team to continue its ascent, remarking of the coming season, “I think teams will have us on their radar a little bit more.” (Read more NHL stories.)