Petr Prucha makes his playoff debut today against the Penguins, in no small part because of his speed.
“I think Pete’s really, really hungry for starters,” Tom Renney said. “I see it in his eyes and he has had some success against Pittsburgh. I liked his game against them. He’s done a good job. He’s worked hard. He’s got a good touch. I like the second and third effort in his game and because usually beyond that, there’s a result with good consequence.”
One would assume that when Renney talks about Prucha’s success against the Penguins this season, he’s referring more to intangibles, because in seven games, Prucha only had one assist. In 16 games before this year, however, Prucha had four goals and five assists against them.
Either way, I think it’s a good move seeing how Prucha has more offensive game than either Colton Orr or Ryan Hollweg, and he immediately makes that fourth line more of a threat as a result.
“I can tell you, he was a handful,” said Dave Siciliano, who coached Avery in junior at Owen Sound from 1997-98 and coached his father at Lakehead University. “You couldn’t meet two people more different. He was so different than his dad. His dad was easy.
“From the minute Sean got here, it was clear he had his own agenda. He did what he felt suited him. He played his way and only his way. And at times, that endeared him to his teammates. But most times, it did the opposite.”
Siciliano finally had enough of Avery in Owen Sound. He asked general manager Ray McKelvie to trade him, after the players came to the coach and made it clear they didn’t want Avery on their team anymore.
“There’s an old 80-20 rule I have,” said Siciliano, the veteran coach. “You can’t spend 80% of your time working on 20% of your problems. But with Sean, it was like 90-10. Too much time spent on one player. He was an explosive kid. He would say things and do things that were inappropriate. We spent far too much time dealing with his issues.
“But I can tell you one thing: Watching him play now, funny thing is Sean Avery has matured.”