Details of Lemieux statue surface
Mario Lemieux doesn't look like a guy ready for a statue just yet — at least not according to Penguins employees against whom he played last week in afternoon staff games at Consol Energy Center.
Lemieux, 45, is using the staff games, which feature the team's coaching staff, to train for the Dec. 31 alumni game between the Penguins and Washington Capitals at Heinz Field.
"After about 10 minutes ... he was doing pretty much whatever he wanted out there," said Jason Seidling of the media relations staff, a defenseman in the staff games.
The Penguins were rumored to be planning a statue for Lemieux to be dedicated Dec. 27 — the 10th anniversary of his shocking comeback as a player after a 3 1⁄2-year retirement. He scored 35 goals and 76 points in 43 games that season.
A California artist, visited by team officials this summer and chosen for the project, is working on the statue. Team officials declined comment, but there is optimism for a dedication of the franchise's first statue sometime in 2011.
From conversations with several sources, some details have surfaced:
• It will capture Lemieux circa 1988-89, statistically his best season and one of the elite in NHL history, with Lemieux posting 85 goals and 199 points.
• The design is Lemieux splitting two unidentified defensemen, each from the New York Islanders. Surnames and numbers are not likely to appear on the opposing players' sweaters per Lemieux's request.
• The statue will rest at the front of Trib Total Media Gate at Consol Energy Center along Fifth Avenue a few steps south of Mario Lemieux Place, behind Civic Arena. A section already is bricked off, with potted plants holding the place where the statue will be situated.
• Members of the Penguins ownership group are paying for the statue as a gift to Lemieux. This is not part of the new arena's original $321 million price tag.
Soon enough Pittsburgh's other iconic sports statues — Art Rooney Sr. of the Steelers; and Honus Wagner, Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell and Bill Mazeroski of the Pirates — will be joined by a Super addition.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins notebook: Czech rookie Simon getting familiar with surroundings
- Penguins notebook: Crosby most excited by Kessel’s footspeed
- Timing drives former KHL star Plotnikov
- Crosby’s off-ice life hardly reflects that of a superstar
- Penguins break in new Cranberry training facility
- Penguins’ Johnston: Kessel, Crosby likely to open season together