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FSG officially takes over Penguins, beginning review of organization

FSG will look to develop the site Civic Arena sat on, which for most of the past decade has been little more than a collection of parking lotsGETTY IMAGES

Fenway Sports Group officially took over stewardship of the Penguins on Dec. 31 and is in the "embryonic stages of looking over what it has acquired," according to Seth Rorabaugh of the PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW. FSG Chair Tom Werner said, “We look at this very differently than when we got involved with the Red Sox. When we got involved with the Red Sox (in 2002), they hadn’t won a World Series in 84 years. This is a team that is an outstanding team on and off the ice." He added, "We are just lucky to be stewards of the franchise right now.” Rorabaugh noted part of FSG's custodial duties include "entrusting the hockey decisions with those already making them." One thing Werner and company already have decided is that the Penguins will "remain a team that spends to the upper limits of the NHL’s salary cap." One potential transaction Werner is a little more bullish on is the "development of the site the Civic Arena sat on." For most of the past decade, it has been "little more than a collection of parking lots." Werner, Penguins President & CEO David Morehouse and COO & General Counsel Kevin Acklin yesterday "met with Pittsburgh mayor Ed Gainey to discuss the site" (TRIBLIVE.com, 1/5).

ON-ICE DECISIONS: Werner said that he has "great confidence" in Penguins GM Ron Hextall and President of Hockey Operations Brian Burke to "steer the ship." He added that FSG personnel will have "daily discussions with the Pittsburgh decision-makers." But noted it is "not up to me to decide who are the forwards and who is the goalie (on a given night).” In addition to the product on the ice, Werner said that it is "important for him to foster an environment where fans have a positive experience at the rink -- win or lose" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 1/6).

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