Obama congratulated Stanley Cup playoff MVP Evgeni Malkin and teammate Sidney Crosby, the youngest team captain ever on a Stanley Cup-winning team.
"You know, we've had a lot of championship teams visit the White House. I've seen a lot of trophies," Obama said. "There is something special about the Stanley Cup, other than it just being really big. Winning this trophy takes a whole new level of sacrifice."
The NHL champs presented Obama with a Penguins jersey.
Obama apologized for being late to the event.
"First of all, I'm sorry to keep you guys waiting -- I have all these things I've got to do -- as president," he said to laughter. "This is by far the most fun thing that I'm doing today."
Invited guests included Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and both of Pennsylvania's Democratic U.S. senators, Robert Casey and Arlen Specter.