Here is a story of another Power Edge Pro trained player who is making his mark in the QMJHL. Marcus has trained with PEP over the last two summers at camps in his hometown of St. John’s , NL. Great kid, exceptional work ethic, who is now thriving in a positive environment with tremendous coaching.
MORE TO CUOMO THAN A WICKED HEAD OF HOCKEY HAIR
24 OCT 2012 09:44PM
SAINT JOHN, NB – With his mane of long hair resting on his shoulders, Marcus Cuomo would look right at home playing for the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1970s.
The hard-nosed Newfoundlander would be a ferocious forechecker while playing helmetless with the likes of Bobby Clarke, Reggie Leach, Bill Barber, Don Saleski and other long-haired heroes with the Broad Street Bullies. Or maybe a ’70s version of Cuomo would play on a line with the Big Bad Bruins, digging the disc out of the corners and feeding Phil Esposito in the slot. Playing with a helmet and visor, however, makes him resemble a young Claude Lemieux or Peter Zezel. And now that Brent Sopel is playing in Russia, Cuomo could compete for the best hockey hair in North America.
But the 5-foot-9, 210-pound forward is not about style – just results. Whether it’s playing back-to-back games or two in three nights, Cuomo’s contributions are a big part of Saint John’s grit level.“I think I’m here in more of a defensive kind of role, especially as a rookie,” the 17-year-old said. “You have to take care of your own end first and then worry about offence later. I try to bring a strong work ethic and a high intensity level.”…
“We’re really happy with Marcus,” Saint John head coach and general manager Mike Kelly said. “He consistently brings energy to the rink and his game doesn’t change. He’s physical and he skates. There are aspects of his game that he needs to focus on, but he never cheats you with a lack of effort.”
That’s due in large part to Cuomo’s idol while growing up, fellow Newfoundland native and Buffalo Sabres forward Luke Adam, whose QMJHL career started with the St. John’s Fog Devils. Cuomo’s father coached Adam prior to that and the future NHLer always had time for kids.“I was always around the rink when he was there, so I admired him,” Cuomo said. “He’s a really nice guy and he’s always willing to help you out, and I think he’s a good role model to follow as an NHLer. We do like our own.”
And the fine folks from ‘The Rock’ are also known for a loyal love of their land… In Cuomo’s case, moving to Saint John didn’t make him miss home. With the Bay of Fundy and Kennebecasis River close by, the son of St. John’s is comfortable in southern New Brunswick.“It’s a good place,” Cuomo said. “It reminds me of Newfoundland – close to the water. It’s nice to be close to home, especially where we don’t have a junior team in Newfoundland.”
Cuomo’s energy on the ice is only matched by his efforts to keep things loose in the locker room. He’s known to quote one-liners from movies, especially those from comedian Will Ferrell. “Come game time, I’m ready to go, but I like to keep the personality there and bring a little Newfie flair to the team,” Cuomo said.
Coming into this season, the Sea Dogs had received a total of 21 games from their seventh-round draft picks. The honour belongs to Scott McDonald, a defenceman from Halifax who played in 2007-08.Then along came Cuomo, a mucker and grinder who’s sure to pass McDonald’s total. And while the former member of the midget AAA St. John’s Privateers was thrilled to be selected in the seventh round last summer by the defending QMJHL champions, he didn’t want to be just another face in training camp. “When you come in as a seventh-round pick, there are not a lot of expectations,” Cuomo said. “There’s not the pressure you have as a first-round pick, so I came in and just worked hard and hoped to turn a few heads. I feel like my work ethic is what got me here and that’s what I’m going to keep using.”
Kelly said that’s the way it has to be. “Everything has to start with a strong work ethic and a strong competitive fire,” the coach said. “After that, you add layers to your game.”