Before Pittsburgh's political and sporting dignitaries could congratulate each other on bringing the Winter Classic to Heinz Field, Max Talbot pre-empted the party.
And all but assured a sellout.
If Talbot can't live off scoring two Game 7 goals to clinch the 2009 Stanley Cup championship, the Penguins forward might have a future in talk radio.
While expressing his "hate" for Alexander Ovechkin on Tuesday on the 105.9 The X Morning Show, Talbot used a word not fit for print to describe the Washington Capitals star and two-time NHL Most Valuable Player.
With that insult, Talbot intensified the league's most spirited rivalry and did more to sell Winter Classic tickets than anything NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, Steelers chairman Art Rooney II, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato said combined.