Penguins dispute report of ownership rift over sale

Sidney Crosby addressed reports that he and Mario Lemieux have had a falling out, calling it ridiculous and saying he feels stupid even commenting on it. (Courtesy of Pens TV)

The Pittsburgh Penguins are disputing a New York Post report Thursday that claims co-owner Ron Burkle prevented a potential sale of the club amid a feud over the selling price.

The report cites three sources and claims co-owner Mario Lemieux was prepared to accept a bid for the hockey team, but was rebuffed by Burkle.

On Thursday, the Penguins released a statement, courtesy the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

“Contrary to a media report regarding the potential sale of the Pittsburgh Penguins, there is no disagreement between us and we remain completely aligned in both approach and philosophy. We continue to explore all of our strategic options, including a possible sale. There is not, and has never been, an established price for the team, and we are still in conversations with potential buyers. It is unfortunate that we even have to respond to a story based on anonymous quotes,” the statement read.

The Post‘s story claimed Lemieux was upset with Burkle for undermining a potential deal to sell the Penguins, citing a disagreement over the asking price.

This is the second time this NHL season that Lemieux’s name has surfaced in a story involving a rift within the Penguins family.

NHL analyst Matthew Barnaby reported that the team’s early season struggles caused a rift between the Hockey Hall of Famer and face of the franchise Sidney Crosby.

Both Lemieux and Crosby responded to the story, with the latter calling it “ridiculous.”

The Penguins visit the Tampa Bay Lightning on Friday.

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