Friday, April 10, 2009

Controversial "created" player helps Pens reach playoffs

It is no surprise that the Pittsburgh Penguins have qualified for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. It is surprising however, that it wasn't Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin that lead the team to the postseason, but a virtual unknown, non-drafted, "created" player by the name of Mark Rose. Rose, no doubt on his way to the Calder Trophy as the league's top rookie, put up 135 points this season, thanks in large part to playing on a top line with Crosby and Malkin, and taking valuable powerplay time away from veterans like Petr Sykora and Bill Guerin. "He's had a great year, but I don't think its exactly fair that he just shows up one day, unheard of, and gets to play wing with two of the best players in the world", said Rose's teammate Chris Kunitz, a player who's ice time was drastically reduced due to Rose joining the lineup. Kunitz isn't alone in offering some alarming verbatim towards the created superstar. "Honestly, when I saw him in camp, I thought he was a waterboy," stated Jordan Staal. "It says in his profile that he weighs 185 lbs, but to me, he looks about 160, soaking wet." Rose has caused a storm, both good and bad, in the organization from the day he was signed, thanks in large part to the jersey number he selected: Mario Lemieux's retired 66.
Rose and the Penguins line up for a faceoff against the Wings.
"Why does he get to do that?", Max Talbot quipped. "I show up for practice one day, and Mario's banner is down from the rafters, and this kid shows up wearing 66. I don't think its right. But for whatever reason, he's allowed to do whatever he wants. Its like (General Manager) Ray Shero has no control over him. Its almost like the kid is making every single decision from a wireless controller or something." Still, with the numbers the created Rose has put up, his teammates have begrudgingly accepted him. "Do I have a problem with losing minutes to this nobody?", asked Ruslan Fedotenko. "Of course. I'm on the 4th line now, or sometimes a healthy scratch. But we ran away with the East this year, so I guess I can't complain too much", he concluded. Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that during the offseason, Rose will be playing third base for the Pittsburgh Pirates. "I guess he can play baseball too, what a shock", said an obviously annoyed Matt Cooke. "I'm only allowed to golf in the offseason. Any other kind of physical exertion in the summer, and I void my contract. But once again I guess he's above the law here." Unlike the Penguins, the Pirates appear to welcoming Rose with open arms. "Obviously, we need all the help we can get," stated Adam LaRoche, the only current Pirate you've ever heard of.

1 comment:

Choy said...