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A quick pre-practice update on Mario’s birthday


Figured I would get my blog on while co-hosting “Penguins Live” on the team website and its HD radio station.

• Some of the dear readers have asked which youth team sweaters I was referring to in this article: Well, the sweaters to which I referred can be found here:|PIT|home. Again, the new Penguins alternates will debut at the Winter Classic, and I’m told we’ll see them unveiled soon.

MARIO LEMIEUXcelebrates his 45th birthday today. I’d love to hear him talk about the last 10 years when the Penguins unveil the “Mario Mosaic” at Consol Energy Center today. We’re only a few months from the 10-year anniversary of his comeback. As has been touched upon here and in Trib print, the Penguins plan to unveil a statue to honor Lemieux on Dec. 27 — the 10-year mark of his first game out of retirment.

• Spent Monday at the Trib offices working on our NHL Preview Section, which hits newsstands — are there still any of those? — and your homes Thursday morning. I’m pretty excited about what we’ve put together for this section, and I’m already curious to read your thoughts. We’re pretty set on breaking from the traditional way of covering hockey, and I hope that shows with type of “stories” in our preview section. As always, check out Team Trib’s coverage here:

• The waivers deadline is noon today. D BEN LOVEJOYwould have needed to clear waivers if the Penguins opted to send him to the AHL, but I think he won an NHL job with a sharp performance Sunday afternoon at Detroit. Ds DERYK ENGELLAND and ANDREW HUTCHINSON would need to clear waivers.

• C DUSTIN JEFFREY, sent to the AHL on Monday, did not need to clear waivers. For the most part I thought he showed strong in camp, though better in the first couple of weeks that his final days. He’ll be one to watch at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this season. I don’t think a top-1o scoring season is too high of an expectation on what should be a elite AHL team.

All for now. Cheers,





Author: Rob Rossi

Rob Rossi is the lead sports columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has been called many names, but “Rossi” is the one to which he most often responds. He joined the Trib in November 2002 and was promoted to the columnist role in July 2014. Previously, he had covered the NHL’s Penguins (2006-14) and MLB’s Pirates (2006), while also working on beats associated with the NFL’s Steelers (2005-06) and the NCAA’s Pitt (2004-06). He has won national and local awards for his coverage of youth concussions and athletes’ charities. Also, he is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers’ Association executive committee and the Pittsburgh chapter chair. Raised in Crafton and Green Tree and a graduate of West Virginia University, he has covered a Super Bowl, All-Star Games in baseball and hockey, the NCAA basketball tournament and over 100 Stanley Cup playoff games, including the Cup Final twice. Oh, and his sports reporting has led him to brief chats with Mick Jagger and Bruce Springsteen; so that’s pretty cool. He is a regular contributor on TV with WPXI, Root Sports Pittsburgh and TSN. Also, he is the authorized biographer of Penguins star Evgeni Malkin.

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