Sunday, December 11, 2005

'Slim chance' Penguins will stay in Pittsburgh, Lemieux says

'Slim chance' Penguins will stay in Pittsburgh, Lemieux says Owner cites lack of progress on new arena

Build your own arena. Go to McKeesport. Go to Cranberry. Go to Washington County. Go to the nonprofits and ask for it to be built on the river on the land in Hazelwood.

Mario, be creative. Be original.

If there was a chance of getting a new arena AND saving the old arena -- without the Penguins -- without public money flowing into the project -- then Mario would be sininging a different tune.

The Penguins are not running out of time. The Penguins have run out of creativity, perhaps.

I do agree that the city and county have not been working with the Penguins. However, get some new blood in there that is willing to talk the hard talk -- and work the hard work -- in serious ways -- then we'll have a whole new chain of interactions. The ones who are in there now are "push-overs," or worse, "do nothings" when the going gets tough. They quit on your Mario because that's a sign of their best response and lack of creativity.

But, they also quit on our kids and parks as well. And, I won't let that continue either.

Mario, I'd be glad to meet with team administrators of The Penguins and come up with some better, alternative plans. Then I'll champion a new home for the Pens -- given that there is no public money involved and given the fact that the Civic Arena gets a new life as a 'civic arena.' I don't want to have the Pens build something new and destroy what is already here. No churn and burn. The Civic Arena is a community asset.

Finally, the I assume Mario knows that Pittsburgh has something else to offer besides the Penguins. We have excellent health care facilities, people and institutions. Those capacities have to be fresh in Mario's mind since this past week when his heart went hyper. He might be glad he's in Pittsburgh and not somewhere else in times like those.

Meet with me. Drop the frustrations. Set a new course. Gain a new attitude.

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