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Couture set to receive plenty of grief
SJ's young star taken last in ASG Draft
1/27/12 - By Mike Lee -

How crazy was that NHL All Star Game Draft. Sharks forward Logan Couture earned the dubious distinction of being drafted last of the 38 players taken. Unofficially, Couture wasn't really drafted. He was the fat kid that was left standing out on the school yard who ended up landing on a team because nobody else wanted him. OK, so it wasn't that bad, but don't think that Couture hasn't heard the last of his misfortune.

One thing that is inherent to any NHL locker room is that teammates are ruthless when it comes to any opportunity to tease you about something. These are the highest paid people in the world at this profession, but make no mistake, they are also 12-year old boys when it comes to dishing out grief when the opportunity arises.

And Couture has setup his teammates with a grand opportunity. There's no doubt that being selected to the All Star Game is a big honor for any hockey player, but being taken last in the 2nd year format on a pretty big stage comes with a certain level of humility.

"Jumbo (Sharks captain Joe Thornton) has been all over me, he loves it," Couture told in a post draft interview on Thursday night.

Just think of the things waiting for him when he gets back to San Jose after Sunday's mid-season showcase of the league's best. Thornton isn't shy about giving his fellow Sharks the business whenever possible, but Couture may have to keep an eye on Ryane Clowe and Dan Boyle, who have been known to play a prank or two in the locker room.

A private organization founded by former NFL player Paul Salata created the LowsmanTrophy, awarded to the last man selected in the NHL Draft. "Mr. Irrelevant" is given a trophy that looks similar to the Heisman Trophy, except the player depicted in the Lowsman Trophy is fumbling the football.

Couture's version of the Lowsman has four wheels and gets pretty good gas mileage. Couture may want to bribe his fellow Sharks by dangling the brand new Honda Crosstour that he was given to soften the indignity of being the last guy standing in the draft.

The NHL also awarded Couture with $20,000, which he can donate to the grassroots hockey charity of his choice. He may want to think about giving it to the Ottawa 67's jersey designer. Whoever that guy is, he's in dire need of new glasses or some updated design software. Couture is a 67's alum, and was forced to endure humiliation much grander than being taken last in the All Star Game Draft…he was forced to wear the god awful striped drapes the 67's call a sweater.

During the NHL Network telecast of the draft on Thursday night, Couture took it all in stride, saying his phone was "blowing up"! Lots of heat right out of the gate, as it should be. Let's just hope that Couture uses the event as motivator.

His stock is already sky high. TSN'd Bob McKenzie stated the obvious in a post draft wrap up show saying Couture, "was the best player in San Jose the first half of the season. Better than Joe Thornton, better than Patty Marleau, better than anyone."

Hopefully Couture follows Phil Kessel's lead and goes on a scoring binge. Kessel was taken last in the inaugural All Star Draft a year ago, and since then is one of the top goal scorers in the league.

Hopefully this inspires Couture's teammates to help him show the league that's no 19th round draft pick. At the very least, there will be a few good laughs to be had in the sharks locker room, which is alwaya a good thing. San Jose can use all the positive vibes available heading in the home stretch.

Perhaps Thornton and company will come up with something similar to the Lowsman for their up and coming superstar. Something for the whole world to see, perched above Couture's locker. Let it be an incentive for the kid.


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