Top 10 Cry Baby Crosby Moments Thus Far
Sidney Crosby was born in 1987, in the eighth month on the seventh day, and he earns $8.7 million and wears No. 87 in the NHL...story book ending right?
Although that dreaded day has arrived, the day Crosby finally won the Stanley Cup and rose to the top of the hockey world...
Well not quite, although what Crosby has already done, is remarkable in itself, I haven't jumped on the Crosby band wagon just yet.
If your like me and refuse to get on your knees (to bow among other things) then consider this the true antagonist outlook in his pursuit of Hall-of-Fame status.
I hope you enjoy these top 10 tear shedding moments as much as I did compiling them.
I have been called jealous, but I can assure you I am not.
While it seems that Pittsburgh currently holds an ideal advantage over the Philadelphia Flyers in such a rivalry, the Flyers came into the post lockout era with two superstars of their own; Mike Richards and Jeff Carter.
While Crosby's 397 points in 290 games may be ahead of most NHL players, it's a far cry from NHL great (best ever?) Wayne Gretzky's 503 points in 290 games to start his career, or Ovechkin's current 420 points in 324 games.
I've been told you cannot compare players, but when were talking best Pen all-time he will have to better than Mario Lemiuex's 1,723 career points.
Furthermore, if he wants to be the best non-flying bird today, he has to better than Malkin's Conn Smythe performance, as well as his Hart finalist showdown this year.
However, each person lives their own life and develops their own story, here's the top 10 Cry Baby Crosby moments from my view (honorable mentions include; dirty playoff beard and dirty fighting).
10. April 6, 2008: Philadelphia 2, Pittsburgh 0,
It's the final afternoon of the regular season. If The Penguins win they lock up the Eastern Conference and get to battle against the Flyers in the first round of the playoffs. If they lose and the Flyers win, the Flyers leap frog into sixth and have to play the red hot Washington Capitals.
That was the story line going into this game, a game the Penguins did not show up for.
And with all this on the line, you charge into battle behind your captain right? Well, only if your leader is going to watch from the press box, as Crosby did.
A team obviously not up for a first round clash with their cross-state rivals, the Crosby-less Penguins looked to be involved in a rather heated cup-of-tea, rather than a hockey game.
And don't ask them about the corners either, because the Penguins didn't go anywhere near them.
9. April 23, 2009: Crosby Sandwich
Being a Flyer fanatic, I was tempted to have this Crosby moment rated higher, however, with this list primarily focused on long term impacts, I figured I might as well get this one out of the way.
That's not to over look it or anything.
Quite possibly one of The Flyers' main highlights all year, Crosby found himself in between the P and J! On the flip side, both Richards and Powe had to have surgery following the playoffs.
However, in a series that saw them inevitably go down, it was nice to see this spark.
8. Dec. 20, 2005: Cherry Rips Crosby
Not really surprising considering Cherry has ripped pretty much everyone and everything except for the Canadian troops in Iraq, Bobby Orr, and Doug Gilmour.
Cherry has even since ripped Ovechkin. However, when you have your own weekly segment on one of Canada's favorite T.V. programs (Hockey Night In Canada) people tend to take notice, and aside from being Canada's "darling", Crosby was in the running for the countries top diver (much to the dismay of Alexander Despatie).
7. May 30, 2005: London 4, Rimouski 0
The greatest of greats usually find themselves in championship games more often then not, however, for Crosby, he often found himself on the wrong end of their outcomes.
After ripping through the Q with his Oceanic, he was "stopped short" by the London Knights in the final 4-0 thumping. Oh well Crosby, Scotties also came out with a brand new Kleenex that summer.
6. May 5, 2005: "Too Many Hats"
I understand that as Captain of your hockey team, you do everything in your power to do what is right for your team. However, whining about a great hockey past time, the throwing of hats after a hat-trick, c'mon.
Crosby may add something to the game of hockey in how he plays, but the way he portrays himself leaves something to be desired.
Throwing your hats on the ice wasn't born with Ovechkin, it isn't a Capital tradition, it's one that the NHL has allowed for years. In fact I wouldn't be surprised if a few hats have flown in favor of Crosby too, but I guess when it comes to hat-tricks, the opposition, and playoffs; then there has to be a hallmark moment, let the tears flow Crosby!
"I was just asking if he could make an announcement to ask them to stop. I mean, the first wave came and then I think they were all pretty much picked up, and then more started coming." WAAAAAAAAH!
5.June 23, 2006: Ovechkin Wins the Calder Trophy
It's kind of one of those things that you win or you don't.
No second chances with this one, even with his 39 goals, 63 assists, and 102 points...Crosby was topped by Ovechkin and his 52 goal, 54 assist 106-point rookie campaign.
All the "Next One" hype, and all the "Sid the Kid" faithful had to wait another year to see Crosby finally crawl out of another player's shadow into his own pair of skates.
4. June 5, 2008: "Second"
This day saw Crosby through one of his hardest bumps in the road; its so frustrating playing all that extra hockey, going all those extra miles just to end up like 29 other NHL teams...Cupless.
On the flip side; having beaten Ottawa, who in the previous year had handed Crosby his walking papers, and also beating the cross-state rival Flyers, there is no question the Penguins were the second best team that year.
3. Nov. 5, 2005: "Those Aren't Chicklets, They're His Teeth"
Just like any baby growing up, they all loose their teeth, so no biggie right?
The lockout's darkest days are behind the game now, and it is rumored to be getting faster, so what did Flyers' GM Bobby Clarke do? He went out and signed the three biggest guys on the market; Darian Hatcher, Chris Therien, and Mike Rathje.
While that was a bad move on the Flyers' part, it certainly didn't put a sparkle in Crosby's smile, in fact in this particular game Darian Hatcher welcomes Crosby to the big leagues, while sending him sprawling to the ice with several of his teeth.
At this time, I am sure Lemiuex stopped by the local corner store to pick up some Advil (for today's tough lumber-to-the-face incidents) with his customary box of Kleenex for cry baby Crosby that night.
2. July 6, 2009/Dec. 22, 2005: DOH! (Double Olympic Honors)
So thus far Crosby has not had much success with his country internationally, but before we look at his short comings, let's look at what he has done.
The 2004 version of the Canadian world juniors saw Crosby lead the way to the gold medal...well almost.
Crosby was an addition to that team and did have eight goals for 14 points in 12 career world junior games (two tournaments), however, Mike Richards was the captain, not Crosby.
The flip side?
Ovechkin was on team Russia, and at the ripe age of 19; yes, he was the captain.
Apparently somebody liked Crosby enough to steal his jersey, but don't even start to point fingers my way.
Fast forward to Dec. 22, 2005 and Canada announces its team which will play in the Olympics, and surprise, surprise...Canada forgets to hire a baby-sitter and in turn has to leave Crosby behind.
However, its 2010, the Olympics are in Canada, and Crosby looks poised to contribute fresh off of a Stanley Cup.
On the other hand, the 2014 Olympic games have been announced and Ovechkin is the official ambassador of the games that take place in his home country of Russia.
The top three players in the world (according to the NHL) are all Russian: Alexander Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin, and Pavel Datsyuk.
If Crosby's jersey hosts the "C", then The Russians may have a temporary fan in me in 2010 (a far cry from a Flyer fan who became one after what the Flyers did to the Russians in the 1975 Summit Series).
1. June 12, 2009: "Class Act"
In the third period of Game Seven of the Stanley Cup Finals, with a tied game....this is the time when any great player wants his time to shine, right Crosby?
Actually Crosby was nowhere to be found.
OK, so gone are the days/players of Ronnie Lott who reportedly bit off his injured finger, while competing in the Super Bowl with the San Francisco 49er's.
Gone are the players like former Leaf Bobby Baun who after breaking his foot due to a Gordie Howe slap shot, scored the game winner in Game Six of the Stanley Cup Finals, to eventually see his team win it in seven.
Gone are the days of Paul Kariya being "leveled" by Scott Stevens only to return to score the game winner in Game Six for the Ducks.
Gone are the days of Bobby Orr winning Canada Cup MVP honors in 1976 on a pair of knees that only allowed him to play 26 games in the three following years.
Gone are the days of Kurt Schilling, pitching on a bloody ankle for the Red Sox (no pun intended) while giving the Boston organization its first Pennant since 1918.
However alive and well is Crosby's 9:59 of playing time, and his one shot on goal in Game Seven...doesn't exactly send chills down your spine does it?
And to top the night off, hockey fans were left wondering; what's with this guy and hockey traditions?
When you play hockey long enough, your going to lose, and your going to win...the trick is to do it with sportsmanship.
After finally bringing home hockey's most illustrious prize, Crosby was found dishonoring the game in typical Crosby fashion.
As captain Crosby chose not to lead his team into the traditional end-of-series-handshakes, but rather to take to the end of the line, I can say there is certainly no shame in that (except for the fact that he is Captain and all). However, as you watch the shakes, the eager players go first (probably to get it out of the way), then come the guys who were interviewed before hand or whatnot, then come the coaches.
However, Niklas Lidstrom (captain of the Red Wings, and first in line), and Kris Draper (a guy who knows a thing or two about winning) were not awarded Crosby's presence, as he thought his time more fitting in celebration with his teammates (although video replay shows them quick to get themselves to the handshake line).
So why make a big deal about this? After all, "(He) made the attempt to go shake hands. (He's) been on that side of things, too. (He) know it's not easy, waiting around."
Well its certainly not the first time he's had to do it. It's not hard even as overblown millionaires to show respect towards your opponents and the game in-and-of-itself, Crosby's quick to remind, "I just won the Stanley Cup, and I think I have the right to celebrate with my teammates."
I wouldn't have made such a big deal about this one except for the fact that I too have been snubbed in the handshake.
As coach of my provincial Ball-hockey team, I was caught in the heat of the moment and told one opposing player to shut-up and sit down, as he was picking on one of my smallest players. At the end of the game, I took my place at the end of the line (tradition, I like to make sure my guys take their glove off and are good sports) and as it turns out, the same opposing player also took to the end of his line. As he made his way to me, he quickly took his hand away so that he wouldn't have to wish me the traditional "good game". I was not as much personally offended that the little punk didn't want to shake my hand (as I assure you those feelings were mutual), it was more disrespectful towards the referees who called the game, the organizer's who brought the tournament together, as well as towards the two very talented teams that had just competed in what was a scoreless affair.
So what does this mean and why is it first?
Hockey players have a long, long memory. And if it isn't Draper himself or one of the Red Wing members directly; players as a collective whole will not soon forget this one, and in the words of Ken Hitchcock, "Someone will make (him) eat his lunch...through a straw."
OK, so he's only 22-years-old, and I'll admit he has a lot more hockey to play, does he have the skill for these games?
Four seasons with 200-plus points—Gretzky
163 assists in one season—Gretzky
Twelve 40-plus goal seasons—Gretzky
Twelve consecutive 40-plus goal seasons—Gretzky
Fifteen 100-plus point seasons—Gretzky
Thirteen consecutive 100-plus point seasons—Gretzky
Dedicated to winning? How about matching Mark Messier's six Stanley Cups?
OK, OK it's Crosby so we'll take baby steps...
Longest consecutive point scoring streak from the start of the season: 51 games (61G-92A-153P)—you guessed it Gretzky.
So dry up those tears Crosby, there's work to be done yet!