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Tampa Bay Lightning | Patrick Maroon “understood his role”

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(Tampa) Pierre-Cédric Labrie is now a member of the Syracuse Crunch, in the American League. Patrick Maroon is looking to win the fourth consecutive Stanley Cup.

Posted at 7:00

Guillaume Lefrancois

Guillaume Lefrancois
The print

Their lives have since gone in opposite directions, but about a decade ago the two giants clashed in a restaurant in an American League town. Labrie has forgotten the circumstances, but remember one thing: Maroon was downcast and wondering about his future in hockey.

The Baie-Comeau athlete told us this story last month during the series against the Laval Rocket. Last week, the anecdote was mentioned to Maroon himself.

“I remember the meeting, but not the conversation in detail. But at that time, the flyers [de Philadelphie] he just sent me home, “says Maroon. Then I was traded to Anaheim. I hadn’t had a good year, not so much on the ice, but mostly mentally. When I got fired, I wondered if I was going to play again.”

The Ducks have given me a second chance and I don’t know how to thank them.

patrick brown

Maroon has a date with history in this ending. The Tampa Bay Lightning are aiming for the third straight Stanley Cup, but it would be the fourth straight for him, as he also triumphed with the St. Louis Blues in 2019. His current streak of 15 straight wins is unknown since the New York Islanders of the former. 1980s, where a handful of players had won 19 series in a row.

Should it pinch? “Just winning one is crazy! he replies. The boys spend 10, 12 years without reaching the final or even the final of the conference. It is the hardest trophy to win in sport. ”

From Texarkana to Philadelphia

Maroon’s career is atypical. You started in 2005, in Texarkana, a city so called because it is located on the border between Texas and Arkansas. As if a super city called Gattawa was created.

His coach? A certain Jon Cooper, just what trainer for three years. He had the same mentality, he was the same manager, but today he deals with NHL players. He understands communication, ”remembers Maroon.

His club Texarkana, who will later relocate to St. Louis, plays in the NAHL, an unknown league from which barely two or three players are enrolled each year. Maroon is ignored in his first year of eligibility, before being claimed at 161And classified by the Flyers the following year.

Marc-André Bourdon played with the Maroons for just over a year at the Flyers affiliates. The man who is now general manager of the Rouyn-Noranda Huskies remembers a “good guy, appreciated by his teammates”.

He’s a big guy, his nickname is Big Rig. Like today, skating was not his strong point, but he was good at goal, he had good hands and a certain tenacity. He had potential.

Marc-André Bourdon

In its third year, the dish skips. The details are confusing, but there has been a disagreement between Maroon and his coach at the Phantoms. The team scrapped him outright and sold him to the Ducks in November 2010.

“When you play in the American League at 20, 21, you are free without supervision. Without going into detail, he may have played, ”says Bourdon.

The transformation

Maroon made his mark, first in Anaheim and then in Edmonton, where he had his best offensive season with 27 goals in 2016-17. He will also help the Oilers reach the playoffs for the first time in 11 years.

Now 34, he obviously plays a supporting role, being employed in the fourth row. But it’s there every night. He has been in uniform for Lightning’s 68 playoff games for 3 years and also played all Blues games during the 2019 Conquest.

Make the most of his limited minutes, as evidenced by his 4 goals in 20 games this spring. On Monday he participated in the awakening of his team by preparing Antonio Cirelli’s goal in the first period. He also hit the target mid-game.

“He was offensive, but he had other qualities, recalls Bourdon. There is a funnel for offensive players in the American League, not everyone can stay offensive at the top.

“Today is at the end of his career, but being a good guy who agrees to play on the fourth row, he still has his place. He understood his role. And he brought him three Cups. ”

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