Will Mario Make A Difference?

He didn’t against the St. Louis Blues, who along with captain Chris Pronger are starting to find their stride now, but the question is can Mario Lemieux inspire his struggling Pittsburgh Penguins towards the playoffs, just how Pronger is doing with St. Louis?

It may be a bit early to tell, since it’s only one game, but the question still hangs in the balance. Mario’s return will certainly be good for the Penguins, but will it be good enough…they have a long way to go yet.

With defenceman Darius Kasparaitis almost certainly going, most likely to a playoff team, and Johan Hedberg being the best they have in goal…perhaps Pittsburgh’s problems lay deeper than Mario and his fellow forwards (despite a low number of goals for thus far)…because we know that if Mario and Martin Straka were both playing, that statistic would be better.

How far are the Penguins? 11th in the East and last in the Atlantic Division, and quite a deal away from .500, so at what point does Pittsburgh start looking towards future campaigns? If Mario can’t instill some life into them now it may well be soon.