Donald Trump welcomed the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins to the White House on Tuesday where he started the ceremony by taking a not-so-subtle jab at the Golden State Warriors.
“By the way, everyone wanted to be here today,” Trump said in his first words at the podium, “and I know why.”
The president’s opening comment was clearly directed at the Golden State Warriors, in particular, their star player Steph Curry, who said he didn’t care to visit the White House in recognition of their NBA championship. Trump announced on Twitter in late September that he was rescinding his invitation to the team due to Curry’s remarks.
“Over the last couple of months the New England Patriots, the Chicago Cubs and the NCAA Champion Clemson Tigers, football, have all visited the White House to celebrate their great victories,” Trump said. “It’s been an honor to have them all here. Now I want to proudly welcome the Pittsburgh Penguins,” he added, before speaking individually about the owner, general manager, coach and many of the star players.
Trump worked in a couple jokes through the introductions as he usually does, praising the team owner Ron Burkle for his negotiating skills.
“Ron, how bout negotiating some of our horrible trade deals they’ve made?” Trump joked. “It’s great to have you Ron, but I really mean that if you want to get involved in negotiating NAFTA, I like it.”
He also admired the group for their good looks and joked about how he must look at the podium with them standing behind him.
“It’s a very handsome group of people. In fact, I don’t like standing in front of them,” the president joked. “First thing you know, we always like unattractive teams,” he added to some laughs from the crowd.
The Pittsburgh Penguins will face off against the Washington Capitals in D.C. on Wednesday night.