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CrosbyWatch: Lemieux stepping in when situation called for it most.


Some quick-hitting thoughts from my day back around Pens Land:

= First, in case you missed it, the story:

= Though there was a general consensus from folks I spoke with at the All-Star Game that the Penguins are expected to look for an impact move at or before the Feb. 27 deadline, their cap space will still be limited because they expect Cs Jordan Staal ($4 million) and Sidney Crosby ($8.7 million) to be back after the deadline passes. The long term injury list can be retroactive, but a team does not get that money back after a player returns as it was explained to me tonight by cap wizard and assistant GM Jason Botterill. In short, the Penguins cannot acquire $4 million in players at the deadline because when Staal returns they would then have to somehow find $4 million in room. What this all means is that any big move by the Penguins, and again I’m hearing they aren’t opposed to making one, would need to have salary going back to a trading team.

= The significance of Mario Lemieux joining Penguins CEO David Morehouse and Crosby’s agent Pat Brisson in Philadelphia on Monday to hear the independent analysis should not be lost on anybody. Lemieux is not one to get involved in matters like this. He deeply trusts the people who work for him, and Brisson, a longtime friend. However, my sense is that Lemieux felt the optics of the Crosby health situation, particularly how it was being played by media in his native Canada, was becoming a problem – and by going to Philadelphia, Lemieux was in his own way saying, Look, if there is any problem here, everybody is getting on the same page today. It is no coincidence that after Lemieux stepped into this mix that GM Ray Shero and Crosby were laughing and coolly answering questions at the presser Tuesday. Lemieux still sets the tone for this organization. He remains the largest figure in it, and he also has a knack for knowing when to assert himself and insert himself into matters.

I realize there are a lot of fans that will refuse to believe what went on at Consol Energy Center with this latest Crosby update was on the up-and-up; but the perspective of somebody who hasn’t won many fans inside the organization with the way he’s covered the Crosby saga is that this was the most comfortable that Shero and Crosby have appeared during any public addressing of the situation. I’m not saying there aren’t some concerns among people that there has been a bit of damage done to the Crosby-Penguins relationship, but I am also saying that at the end of the day the relationship between Crosby and Lemieux trumps everything, and that relationship appears strong. For those people already speculating about a possible Crosby exit in summer 2013, keep this in mind: The Lemieux Family is like family to him, and if I’ve come to know Crosby at all over the past six years it is that nothing is more important to him, more precious, that family.

= RW Pascal Dupuis on Crosby:

“He looks like himself. He’s confident he’s going to play again this year. We want him to be confident. We want him to be around. I think he’s in the right frame of mind.”

= Highlights from the Crosby portion of the presser:

–On the injection: “Hopefully it’s a one-time thing. It’s different every time. It’s something I’d rather not, to be honest with you. I’d rather get this work done here and get rid of the swelling, and I’ll work hard to do that. That’s the plan: It’s a one-time thing. Right now there’s no plan to do that or anything like that.”

–On how he’s feeling:  “It’s been pretty good. Like I said, still some symptoms. I feel much better than I did a couple weeks ago skating. The motion stuff seems much better, so I’m happy with that. I’m still not where I want to be but it’s encouraging that I’m skating and I’m just happy at this point to be doing that. Staying in shape a bit and getting out there, it’s nice to kind of be back in the swing of things.”

–On his other members of his concussion team: “Obviously, I’ve been to Atlanta to see (chiropractor Ted) Carrick and a lot of the motion stuff was something I really was happy with the response I had there. I’ll be in touch with him as well as (UPMC concussion guru Michael) Collins and the staff. Really, I think it’s a team effort. Everyone obviously has got my well-being in mind. We need to make sure that I get rid of this stuff before I play.”

–On talking with teammates: “A little bit. I basically just kind of talked about the break and where they were. Basically my week was spent in doctors’ offices and MRI machines and stuff like that. I didn’t have an exciting break but some of the guys did. Tried to fill them in as much as I can, but obviously we have a game tonight. Just trying to keep them in the loop without talking their ear off about what I did.”

= Highlight from the Shero portion of the presser:

–On the broken neck reports: “When Sidney went to see Dr. (Robert) Bray in California they did a series of X-rays and CAT scans. In our conversations with Dr. Bray, his advice was there was something that he saw that he wanted a second opinion he encouraged us to get. In addition to our team at UPMC, we sought out Dr. (Alexander) Vaccaro in Philadelphia and had a conference call (Monday). All the doctors consulted during that conference call, which we were a part of, and they went through everything as to what they saw – the radiologists and so forth – and they came up with that there was no evidence of past or present fracture, which was good news.

“(Vaccaro’s) belief was that he wanted other people to take a look at this, is what he saw. We’ve been very fortunate through this entire process since last January having the doctors we’ve been exposed to both at UPMC and independent doctors that Sidney has seen. To have that group together on the phone yesterday was beneficial for everybody, to hear everybody out, to hear the radiologists in particular. Once we did that it felt very good at the end of the conversations with where we were. Had another conversation (Tuesday) to make sure we understood each other, and pretty consistent that’s where we were: no evidence of past or present fracture.”

–On Penguins medical staff not finding the injury: “This is an injury that is being worked on here in Pittsburgh through our training staff, our medical staff and he’s been getting at UPMC. What was being ruled out was anything more than that, which was what all the radiologists took a look at. What I can say about our doctors, team doctor (Charles) Burke, the medical staff at UPMC that we’ve dealt with, (Michael) Collins, Dr. (Joseph) Maroon, Dr. (Joseph) Fuhrman —they’re experts in their field. They’re amongst the best in the world at what they do. We’re very fortunate they’re in our backyard.

“As the manager of the Penguins and for our ownership, every player in addition to Sidney that we have is encouraged to get a second or third opinion on any injury that they have. One of the things to make clear with Sidney over the course of the summertime when he was going to see Carrick and now Dr. Bray, any time he’s gone for outside consultation, we’re in constant contact with Sidney and the doctors. Everything goes through our medical team after he sees these other consultants. We’re all in this together and the one thing we’re trying to find out is what’s causing these symptoms, how can we get him back safely to play, and as I’ve said many times, he will not return to play until those symptoms disappear. So that’s our next step and that’s the goal for everybody involved here.”

Had a chance to speak with Shero after the Penguins’ win over Toronto, and he was adamant that he did not pay lip service to the team’s medical staff at the presser. He noted Burke’s successful surgery last season on C Evgeni Malkin, who less than a full year later is the MVP favorite, and Collins’ work with his son, whose concussion experience opened Shero’s eyes to the injury on a personal level.

Shero called Burke and Collins his “go-to guys.”




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.


  1. badvibesdude says:

    People need to settle down. The only time the Pens dropped the ball on this in terms of their relation to Crosby was letting him play in the Winter Classic and against Tampa Bay after the Steckel hit. Other than that, they didn’t do anything wrong. Even then, other players have shown that concussion symptoms may not crop up immediately after a hit.

    Why is nobody in the media lambasting the Flyers for their handling of Giroux and Pronger? Both players were allowed to play with symptoms that should have been diagnosed or were diagnosed as a concussion and Pronger may be missing the rest of the season because of it. Giroux was seen on 24/7 telling his coach he didn’t feel right in one of his first games back.

    There was no broken neck, so now that whole side of the story should go out the window. The Pens didn’t screw it up and fail to diagnose a broken neck.

    Good lord. By this point, I would hope we’ve all learned that people just need to shut up and quit reading things into the Crosby story that aren’t there. He’s injured. It’s a difficult injury that is likely to have setbacks. There’s a second injury to the neck that may be causing the symptoms. He’ll play when he’s healthy. Sorry if that doesn’t happen quickly enough for everybody, but just shut up and be patient. Geez. I know we’re an immediate-gratification society, but this is ridiculous.

  2. sjb says:


  3. sjb says:

    So, I type in a full paragraph and this crappy site list only the first word. Please get rid of the Mollom CAPTCHA. It’s garbage.

  4. Robert says:

    It appeared the Penguins (Ray Shero And Sidney) wanted to be specific about his injury and treatment. Couldn’t the reporters (Rob Rossi among them) asked them to really be specific? First, I was astounded they would go so far releasing personal medical information on a player. But since they did and were trying to put a cap on speculation which is analagous to herding cats, why weren’t they specific; which soft tissue? disc? muscle? Nerve pinched? which injection? Anti-inflammatory? Epidural? Nerve blocker? (That may be redundant) Answers to those may be a little more specific with less to speculate on. Personally I would let the speculation rage on. That was all it was. speculation. I was caught up in the fracture along with many others. Now I know why teams release regional injury updates.

  5. sabu says says:

    Dear Pittsburgh hockey media:

    Please grow up. Stop asking every damn day when 87 is coming back. When he’s ready to go, he’ll be out there. Please move on. Please listen to Shero:

    “as I’ve said many times, he will not return to play until those symptoms disappear. So that’s our next step and that’s the goal for everybody involved here.”

    Enough already

  6. wendy says:

    Crosby would not be building a brand new multi-million dollar home if he didn’t intend to be here for the long haul….and it is in close proximity to Lemieux’s home so he can still go over for Natalie’s winning spaghetti dinner :-)

  7. espo33 says:

    A way to get rid of a salary is to dump Martin. The dude stinks. There is a report on TSN (yes questionable to rely on it…) that Marek Zidlicky is unhappy. His cap hit is $4M and next year he is gone. Maybe trade Martin for Zidlicky, save the $1M in space for the season and look elsewhere? Zidlicky can be a PP asset. If not then trade Martin to anyone who wants him. That will save space and even a pillion on the ice is better then him.

  8. Candy says:

    It’s time to trade Crosby so he can achieve his full potential. Won’t happen here.

  9. Ja Candy says:

    Boy, do I miss Mike Lange on television.

  10. Ja Walker says:

    Boy, do I miss Mike Lange on television.

  11. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Yeah, J-Walk, me too.

  12. tomas says:

    @Candy What team are you a fan of because it certainly isn’t the Pens?

  13. Lady Di says:

    Tomas: Being a fan doesn’t mean blind loyalty. I’m embarrassed by the shabby treatment and not afraid to admit it. On behalf of Penguins Nation, I’m sorry, Sid.

  14. Pen Central says:

    THN named Jonathan Toews the best leader in the league. Of course, we passed him up in the draft for somebody named Jordan Staal, whoever that is.

  15. Ralph says:

    Well said, Lady Di. Ray Shero, Mario Lemieux and company fell asleep at the wheel, I’m sorry to say.

  16. Jake says:

    This whole injury feeds the type of player that Sid is. I have no doubt in my mind that with him back in the lineup, a healthy defense corps (maybe some wizardry from Mr. Shero), a healthy Jordan Staal, a goaltender in his prime, a powerplay specialist like James Neal, a Norris trophy caliber defensemen in Letang, a superstar like Malkin………have I made my point yet??????

  17. Babsy says:

    @ Lady Di : Sid doesn’t feel he’s had shabby treatment & if you feel he has, you need to go back to square one & read “everything” he’s said about it all. I don’t think he would appreciate your apology because it is an insult to all the people he loves & respects, & that love & respect him.

    The only disrespect was from the NHL for not suspending Steckel for a “blindsite hit to the head” and Hedman for “boarding and a hit to the head”. I don’t know if they are blind or stupid, or just wanted to pretend it didn’t happen so it would all quiet down quicker. How did that work for you, NHL?

    I also totally agree with “badvibesdude” and “tomas”. I also think that a lot of people don’t understand loyalty (on both sides of this), nor have they any themselves.

  18. Jay Walker says:

    Trade Fleury, Staal, Martin and Sullivan, and do it now!

  19. Eddie Spaghetti says:

    Shero is “happy” with the O’Reilly pick-up? Do you expect him to be unhappy? Who writes these headlines, anyway?

  20. I Hate MLB says:

    Where’s our dynasty?

  21. Michael says:

    Babsy, C’mon, you really think Sid would say publicly the Pens organization sucks? Only Americans say those kinds of things.

  22. Jay Walker says:

    Time to move MAF and his $5.5-mill contract, get a quality, physcial d-man and a top goalie prospect in return. No doubt Johnson can handle two-thirds of the load in goal.

  23. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Like your vision, J-Walk. You’re waaaaay too creative for the ‘Burgh, I’m afraid.

  24. Greg says:

    Tyler Kennedy? Didn’t he retire already?

  25. Liriano says:

    MAF ranks 27th in save percentage, 12th in goals-against average and eighth in salary.

    Regardless of what the Pens-lickin’ media tell us, that’s not a franchise goalie.

  26. I say trade the highly skilled 4 million dollar defenseman, Paul Martin to CBJ who needs someone of his caliber for a first round draft choice.
    I know it would be a loss, however Malkin’s +/- numbers will head in the positive direction.

  27. bdef says:

    Jay Walker, you’re an idiot. hahaha you’re definitely good for a laugh but if you think you have any credibility after posting comments like that, you’re outta your damn mind. You don’t just trade away cornerstones of the franchise when you’re in the middle of the pack in the eastern conference playoff race. Sure, Sully, Kennedy(w/o being injured), Martin, etc. are all viable candidates to be dealt & that wouldn’t bother me in the least. But to trade MAF &/or Staal, that’s outright ludacris & insane. You should be blocked from posting comments ever again b/c you clearly are a fair weather fan who has not a damn clue of what he’s talkin about.

  28. Jay Walker says:

    bdef: See Liriano’s post above.

  29. Nate says:

    Agree with J-Walk — we’re one and done in the playoffs, two and done at the most. Now’s the time to show some testosterone because this team isn’t Stanley Cup caliber. Being a fan doesn’t mean blind loyalty.

  30. Victor says:

    I’m utterly amazed that so many ‘Burghers actually believe Fleury and Staal have lived up to the hype.

  31. The Big Z says:

    The way Steigerwald drools over those two makes me very uncomfortable.

  32. Jimmy T says:

    Sullivan, Martin, Michalek, Kennedy, Adams, Park, Tangradi . . . I swear, we’ve got enough deadwood on this team to stoke fires for the next 10 winters.

  33. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Yeah, remember when Rob Rossi raved about the Michalek and Martin signings? Ooooops.

  34. Dana says:

    I can’t get over how little talent we have when you consider all the high lottery picks we stole/we’re handed for years.

  35. jk says:

    Jimmy T—- do you know how much they are paying adams, park and tangradi? Peanuts lol. I know you think the Pens can trade away some depth/role players and come back with Rick Nash, but that just won’t happen.

  36. Jay Walker says:

    What can’t we get Nash before the deadline? Fleury would be a good place to start if we also can get a top goalie prospect from the Blue Jackets or a third party.

  37. Da Mayor says:

    Jay: You’re spot on. The front office needs to make a bold move and make it now. If if means MAF is the odd man out, then so be it. At his salary, he’s average at best.

  38. tomas says:

    This blog has obviously been infected by a three-headed virus of Cryer,Craps and Grey Wings fans!!!

  39. Fred says:

    Shortpants: Don’t you know that Rossi raves about all things Penguins by now?

  40. The Big Z says:

    Nash, Malkin and Neal on the same power play? Triple yoi!

  41. The Big Z says:

    Staal and Cooke to the Predators for Suter and Lindback.

    Fleury, Martin or Michalek and a draft pick to the Blue Jackets for Nash.

  42. Ken says:

    Love it, Z! We may have to give the Preds another player, but I’d take Suter in a heartbeat. And Lindback is a Rinne clone, I’ve heard people say.

    Now just do it, Shero!

  43. Jay Walker says:

    Suter and Letang would be the top D combo in the league.

  44. The Gonsk says:

    I expect the Pens to stand pat. Seats are filled in one of the most expensive arenas in the world. Mario and company make lots of money. No need to put a better product on the ice.

  45. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Staal is no center — six assists in 34 games. If I’m a winger, I want no part of his line.

  46. Van Man says:

    It’s pretty obvious that Eric has the hockey skills in the Staal family.

  47. Van Man says:

    Big Z: Understand where you’re coming from here, but the Preds wouldn’t take damaged goods (Staal) and an over-the-hill veteran (Cooke) for one current All-Star and a potential future one. Would gladly add Martin or Michalek to the pot.

  48. Gabriel says:

    Am I the only one who misses Mike Lange on television?

  49. Gabriel says:

    How much longer can MAF carry this franchise on his back?

  50. Bob says:

    Gabriel: LMAO.

  51. Van Man says:

    Hey, look, Jordan Staal got an assist!

  52. Tom says:

    Not 100% sure about Crosbys injury, maybe yes maybe no. He seems SOFT like his BFF Mario. Don’t touch me.. Ouch.. Got rid of Jagr who was the best on the team at the time. Now what?? Get rid of Malkin?? Man up and play or are we the fans being played my Mario???

  53. Lady Di says:

    Tom: Crosby isn’t soft like Mario was all those year. But you’re right — dumping Jagr for Kris Beetch was a horrific mistake. As the second-best player in franchise history, No. 68 deserved a lot better treatment here.

  54. Van Man says:

    It’s a absolute joke that Jagr wasn’t voted to the all-time Penguins team. And you wonder why so many people look at us as Smallsville …

  55. Sam says:

    Johnson was great tonight. And he did it for $4 mill less than our (ahem) franchise goalie.

  56. bdef says:

    Mike lange not on television is criminal..”steigy” is awful. Johnson is having his worst yr since we’ve had him & he wouldn’t have been able to take us to the cup finals in eitehr of the last 2 yrs let alone this past yr.

  57. bdef says:

    Staal is 23 yrs old!! can’t give up on him, he’s a 3rd line center BEHIND..not with…2 of the best in the world. Last time I checked you don’t necessarily play w/ the cream of the crop on the 3rd line. He’s going to play with gritty, grind-it-out style players, that’s the way it goes. I agree that at some point maybe he’ll be better served at a wing position w/ sid or geno. but to ship him away isn’t smart. he was on pace for between 30-40 goals before his injury, & we don’t exactly have all the depth or talent in the world on the wings. not to mention he’s our best pker & hes a selke candidate when healthy for a full season.

  58. bdef says:

    MAF frustrates me too w/ his awful inability to play the puck, the occasional soft goals..but cmon ppl we don’t have a better option right now anyways. if we were 10th in the east & 10 pts out of a spot maybe i’d say ok let’s shake it up, something needs to change. That’s not the case, we’ve been killing it lately. Team chem, is something to be taken into accnt by Shero as well, & dumping guys like staal & fluery isn’t smart. Johnson is not the answer & ppl give Johnson a pass over fluery for whatever reason. If MAF gives up 2 quick goals like Johnny did last night, which he has, everyone kills him. Though, no one will say a word when it’s Johnson. Everyone gets too caught up w/ stats & likes to complain & hate too many games did barrasso win 6-5, 5-4, 7-6..many times!! but all anyone remembers is that he has 2 cup. Fluery already has one at 27 yrs old, & no one can tell me he had nothing to do w/ it.

  59. bdef says:

    we’re 10-1-2 in the last 13 games i believe..ppl need to enjoy. There are at least 26 other franchises that would love to switch places w/ us right now. Think the ppl in KC wouldn’t love to have this team right now?? b/c it almost happened, we almost didn’t have a hockey team anymore. We get spoiled w/ the steelers & pens, let’s face it we do. I have my complaints, gripes & opinions about players & the team too, but let’s not lose perspective. It’s not like we’re talking pirates here, the pens will be legit cup contenders for upward of the next decade. Everyone needs to relax, shero knows what hes doing

  60. bdef says:

    & FUCK JAGR..helloooo ppl does everyone forget that HE WANTED OUTTT!!! yes our heralded “captain” at the time wanted out!! Things got tough & he wanted to bail. esp w/ mario playing again at that time, it was obvious that Jagr realized he wasn’t going to win a cup w/o Lemieux & he most likely never will. Then he pulls more of his wishy washy primadonna bullshit again over the offseason to play w/ the flyers, i understand the business part of it all but don’t tell me that wasn’t his way of sticking it to the pens & their fan base for how “unfairly” he’s been treated, that was a lack professionalism & unethical business practice at its finest. To say that he owes mario his hockey life & then not even respond, or call to let them know what he’s doing..pathetic. Jagr was phenomenal, one of the best talents of all time, but he lacked proper intangibles to be the leader of a cup contending team, & that’s the hard truth.

  61. bdef says:

    Jagr did it to himself. & while he was, & at times still is majestic & unreal to watch, he doesn’t care about ppg or lemieux or the fans. His actions say it all. Plus, his story changes everytime he’s interviewed about what reallly happened in the offseason. One time he didn’t tt mario, the next time he did. He’s full of shit, he communicates through his agent, HE IS HIS AGENT’S BOSS & therefore responsible for how his agent represents him, period! Lemieux saved hockey for us on a few different occasions, w/o him this blog wouldn’t even be up right now. So again, everyone should stfu when saying anything negative about lemieux, open their eyes & realize that “jags” is a punk

  62. Harry says:

    Jagr was forced out because of his contract. The franchise was headed out of town. Hellooooo.

  63. Dejan Shortpants says:

    beft: Do you watch the games? We won a Stanley Cup in spite of MAF, not because of him. Osgood outplayed him except in Game 7. And if we had a real franchise goalie, there would have been no Game 7 — period.

  64. Jay Walker says:

    If I was Jagr, I would have to told the Penguins to stick it rather than play on the third or fourth line, too. That was an insult to the second-best player in franchise history.

  65. Jenny says:

    Anyone who voted for Mullen over Jagar on the all-time Pens team needs to be drug-tested right now.

  66. Jenny says:

    I’d trade Staal in an Oakland minute. He’s injury-prone and size is his only upside.

  67. bdef says:

    Bullshit, watch the hightlights from the 09 playoffs & MAF stops philly’s jeff carter in game 3 i think it was, with a toe save or that series woulda been a wrap, he stopped ovechkin on a break away early in game 7, that turned the entire game around..osgood gave up 2 goals to Max Talbot that he should’ve stopped, esp the first one. If it were Fluery that’s what you all would be saying, “a reall franchise goalie woulda saved that…” osgood was the product of a great defensive unit/system in front of him

  68. bdef says:

    D, shortpants, i don’t believe you pay much attention to the games if u believe that Brent Johnson is a better option than Fluery. For the most part MAF makes big saves in big moments of big games, anyone who disputes has amnesia or has selective vision/memory. 08 cup finals, game 5, MAF played outta his mind..ill give u a tough series against montreal in ’10, unacceptable, but not one player had a good series then, tampa last pplay goal, 14 total goals in 7 games..he can’t score goals & play defense in front of himself

  69. bdef says:

    I agree Jagr should be on the all-time team, asinine that he’s not. but he wasn’t forced outta his contract, why would u trade off your most important asset/captain/franchise player…why not trade kovy, or straka, or robert lang, jan hrdina? b/c non of them were causing problems or bitching. If you wanna go w/ the financial excuse, still you’d cut salary other ways, the team wasn’t bottomfeeders of the league, they were still making the playoffs & competing at that point, they lost in the east. conf. finals to nj a yr or 2 before that

  70. bdef says:

    to trade staal would depend on what I’d get in return, never said i wouldn’t listen if i were prob listen to offers for just about anyone other than 87, 71, 18, 58…he has same number of goals as Eric, who everyone seems to love so much, maybe not the plymkr we expected but maybe moving him to winger could work down the road

  71. bdef says:

    but why trade him jenny?? just b/c of injuries? crosby seems to be injury prone w/ more serious, inexplicable complications than staal…do we trade him too??? Malkin is everyone’s hero now, but just a yr ago everyone bitched about how he was underachieving & also had a negative outlook w/ season ending knee surgery..but eric staal, toews in chi-town are THE GUYS on those teams, staal is a 3rd option on this team w/o much winger him now & im willing to bet he goes somewhere & dominates & ppl will still bitch b/c hindsight is 20/20..& J-walk if you honestly believe Jagr woulda been on the 3rd line for this team, esp w/ injuries, then i have to question how much hockey you watch also, he woulda been a top 6 forward, what he said was a cop out

  72. bdef says:

    still no excuse for him to handle that situation so unprofessionally, you fail to hit on that point, & choose to ignore it. HIs story about “what really happened” changes everytime he’s asked about it, the only logical explanation i heard from him was that Philly has more right handed centers & forwards to be more effective for him on the right wing..other than that it’s all garbage

  73. bdef says:

    d shorts, since when isn’t it enough to win the we have to win it in 5 or 6 games!? hahah typical fan response for someone who will always find the negatives of the best situation…you act like detroit wasn’t a good team. not to mention the 5-0 game 5 loss in detroit in which EVERYONE played like shit! you’re way off in sayin we won in spite of MAF.

  74. WeareallGM's says:

    Jordan Staal injury prone? Really 2 injuries and he’s injury prone.. LOL

    Some very short sighted views here. Wow I’m amazed at how uneducated some of you are… You need to come up here to Canada and start at grade 9 again… Good Grief.

  75. Jay Walker says:

    bdef: Make all the excuses you want, but the numbers don’t lie. MAF ranks in 28th save percentage, 16th in goals-against average and eighth in salary. And that’s with a d-conscious team in front of him. To pay $5.5 mill for an average goalie makes zero sense in the cap era

  76. Dejan Shortpants says:

    Well said, J-Walk.

  77. bdef says:

    again i never said I didn’t have my complaints w/ MAF too, ppl over react to stats tho. I’m w/ you on the sv %, that’s awful. Fact is, the most important thing is winning games, he’s one of the winnigest goaltenders every yr! I see it as who would you rather have in game 7 or a big game..for my money I’ll take MAF. Even Brodeur, one of the best all time between the pipes, has had many down yrs & bad moments. he’s about 10 yrs older at least & has 2 more cups, MAF can match that before its all said & done

  78. bdef says:

    He’s obviously good enough to win a cup w/, & isn’t that the most important thing? Idk that he’ll ever have the numbers or shutouts, he prob won’t, but that’s not to say he won’t win b/c he does. so you suggest dealing him for another goalie? if so who??b/c there isn’t a better option on this team as it stands, there’s not!

  79. bdef says:

    like i said I’d be open to at least hearing what you could get for staal too. a few yrs back rumors of staal to thrashers for kovalchuk was one i said i’d do in a heartbeat, but more & more i dont believe i’d trade staal right now

  80. bdef says:

    & those aren’t excuses, those are legit points..he could win 10 straight & ppl would bitch b/c he didn’t have 5 shutouts doing it..there are goaltenders making more & winning less, ill take wins over stats anyday

  81. Van Man says:

    Sure, the Pens win their share of games. But are they because of MAF or in spite of him? I want to see a 2.30 GAA and .925 save percentage before I call him a franchise goalie.

  82. Lady Di says:

    WeareallGM: Staal played only 78 of a possible 138 games the lsat two seasons. That’s 57 percent — the definition of injury-prone. Do your homework, OK?

  83. bdef says:

    ok & outta 138 games in that same span crosby has only played in 49. so let’s trade him & get everything we can for him too, if that’s what you’re basing it off of. The team is paying him more than staal to sit in the suite next to mario. Injuries are a part of sports, to give up on somone & get rid of b/c they get a couple injuries isn’t necessarily the right move. Hell Geno would be gone for that matter too then.

  84. bdef says:

    & van man, while the most important stat to me comes in the form of W’s, I can’t say i 100% disagree w/ your feelings on it. I understand where the frustration comes from i honestly do, but still no one gives a reasonable solution. To get a goalie “prospect” & let Johnson carry the load the rest of the way is as good as throwing in the towel on this season, i disagree w/ doing that..idk why it matters how we win as long as we do!

  85. bdef says:

    & lady di, you say “do your homework” as if you compiled some profilic stat that the Elias Sports Bereau couldn’t figure out hahah, that was comical. But seriously, you’re putting together 2 seasons, how many career games did he miss before pk subban stepped on his foot in the 2nd rd in ’10?? you let me know that one when you get a chance

  86. Lady Di says:

    bdef: Once is an accident, twice is a trend.

  87. Lady Di says:

    bdef: As for Sid, he has limited trade value because of his salary and health problems even if he were available.

  88. Van Man says:

    bdeaf: This team is not Stanley Cup-caliber. Feel free to keep dreaming, though.

  89. Van Man says:

    bdeaf: Johnson (26-17) and MAF (102-54) have comparable records the last three seasons.

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