Saturday, July 08, 2006

Will the Penguins bring back Marc Recchi?

The return of the Recching Ball to Pittsburgh? He got his cup with the 'Canes, so why not? If the price is right, the Penguins could use some veteran leadership and scoring to balance the lines out, lest Sidney Crosby do EVERYTHING.

From the Pittsbugh Post-Gazette:

A lot of things have changed since the Penguins traded Mark Recchi to Carolina March 9.

His desire to play here apparently has not.

And while the Penguins are not ready to commit to bringing him back, they aren't ruling it out, either.

General manager Ray Shero was traveling yesterday but sent word through a team spokesman that nothing had changed since earlier in the week, when he said, "I'm going to see how this whole thing shakes out" before deciding whether to pursue Recchi.

The hitch? Apparently Crosby and Recchi didn't see eye-to-eye last season, which makes sense since Recchi is pretty short.

Recchi's relationship with Sidney Crosby was purported to be particularly strained, but Crosby said last evening that he would not object to Recchi returning.

"I wouldn't have a problem with it at all," Crosby said.

Curran acknowledged that Crosby and Recchi had some run-ins, but downplayed their significance.

His take: Recchi spoke up when he felt a younger player said or did something that was out of line, but simply was fulfilling part of his mandate as a veteran.

"When he was brought to Pittsburgh, part of the reason was to mentor some of the younger guys and give them the benefit of his experience," Curran said.

"He considers that everyone has to be accountable [for their actions]. If anything needs to be said, Mark isn't hesitant, at this stage of his career, about saying it."

If Recchi's words wounded Crosby, whose maturity far transcends his 18 years, the scars apparently weren't permanent.

After Recchi was traded, Crosby asked him to autograph the stick Crosby used to score his first NHL goal, because Recchi had assisted on it. And when Carolina won the Cup, Crosby text-messaged him a note of congratulations.
If Recchi does come back to Pittsburgh, he'll have to fully understand that he's going back to a team that has little hope in hell of reaching the playoffs in the near future. If he isn't going to be happy in that role, he ought to sign elsewhere. The Penguins don't need Recchi TOO much and his production saw a noticable decline last season. I'd rather the Penguins get a cheaper UFA like Oleg Kvasha that can provide decent 2-way play at a fraction of the cost.

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