Friday, October 07, 2005

Crosby's Big Transition

Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes of Sidney Crosby's transition from the high-scoring QMJHL to the bigger and tighter NHL. (Story Link)

At an age when many people are overwhelmed by the idea of leaving home to attend college, Crosby has moved to a foreign country and taken a job in which everything he does or says will be analyzed across North America.

Ok, the USA might be a 'foreign' country, but it's not as if he really has to change his lifestyle and learn a new language. The only thing he'll have to get used to is separating US$ bills since they are all the same colour...and not using metric.

Veterans such as Recchi and Mario Lemieux help Crosby on the ice by sharing insights they've accumulated over the years, but Lemieux came through with perhaps the most important assist of all when he offered to have Crosby live with his family this season.

There's a little something in it for Lemieux -- his four children have a swell new playmate -- but the arrangement is far more valuable for Crosby. It spares him worrying about the details of day-to-day living, whether it's paying utility bills on time, making sure he has clean socks or preparing nutritious meals.

The Penguins placed Lemieux with a family when he joined the franchise in 1984, and the merits of that arrangement stuck with him. Which is why the decision to have Crosby move in with his family was as easy for Lemieux as the one general manager Craig Patrick made to select Crosby after the Penguins won the NHL draft lottery.

"Living with Mario is really going to make the adjustment off the ice easier," Recchi said. "He's not trying to fend for himself and make meals. He's going to eat properly all the time, and that's very important."

Hmm, Mario was once known for eating Big Macs and French Fries when he first came to the NHL. I hope Crosby isn't getting the Young Mario diet.

It's great that Mario can mentor young Crosby, but how hard is it to pay the utility bills and worry about some household chores? Talk about babying the kid. Let him grow up and learn a little personal responsibility.

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