Mario Lemieux is one of the greatest players to play in the NHL and also one of the best executives in the history of the game. He has made the city of Pittsburgh into a hockey town. Before his arrival in 1984 the team was known for being the worst team in the league and on the brink of bankruptcy. Now, under the stewardship of the great Mario Lemieux this team is consistently one of the top five teams in the league.
Lemieux is revered for his scoring accomplishments but his greatest achievement was leading the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Stanley Cup Championship from the executive suites. History is littered with ex-players who were unable to make smart personnel or business decisions that resulted in wins for their franchises both on and off the ice but not Mario Lemieux.
Mario Lemieux demonstrated that he is as talented a businessman as he was a hockey player by bringing the Penguins out of bankruptcy and into the black both as a player and as an owner. The greatest scorer in the history of the NHL was drafted by the team when it was almost bankrupt and helped turn it into a two-time Stanley Champion. Several years later he took over the team when it was once again bankrupt and owing him almost thirty million dollars in salary in September 1999. He found a way to bring fans back to the building by coming out of retirement. Six years later, in 2005, the team was out of debt completely having paid all its creditors. Only an individual such as Mario Lemieux, someone with incredible vision and financial acumen, could have accomplished such a herculean task
Currently, Mario Lemieux as the owner of the team has the Penguins competing for the top spot in the NHL. The team is a financial success and he employs the best player in the game in Sidney Crosby. Mario Lemieux it seems is once again on top of the NHL, a place that he always seems to be drawn back to no matter what the obstacles placed in front of him. He is an example to people that no objective is too great if you are willing to think, persevere and believe in oneself because that is the only way he could have saved the Penguins and himself from financial ruin.