sidney-crosby-controller-disconnected

Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby is going to win the Hart trophy at the end of the season. Not only was Sid the only guy to score 100 points this year, he is also a good defensive player too. That’s why on Friday night against the New York Rangers, I was surprised to see Crosby completely give up on a play in the defensive zone.

As Carl Hagelin fishes the puck cleverly out of the corner, he finds Brad Richards wide open in the slot. Richards, who appears to be surprised by how much time and space he has, takes the puck from his backhand to forehand and slides it past a helpless Marc-André Fleury. Crosby, who is trailing the play, glides towards Richards as if the person controlling him has had his controller disconnected. That’s his man right there, and he’s not hustling at all.

#FancyGIF by me, Ian Oland.

Here is video of the goal as well.

What do we learn here? The favorable way the media treats Crosby over Alex Ovechkin is, well, kind of appalling. When I searched in Google for “Sidney Crosby gives up on goal” I got zero recent results. The only people who made mention of it was the lovely Capitals blog Brooks Laichyear (whom you should follow) on Twitter.

As we all can so painfuly recall, people have poked fun at Ovechkin’s defense for ages. Let’s not forget this play against the Rangers in the playoffs a few years ago , which the mainstream media feasted on.

Then, towards the end of the regular season this year, Ovechkin gave up on a play in the defensive zone, which allowed the Dallas Stars to go up 4-0 against the Capitals late in the third period. While Ovechkin should hustle no matter what, this play and the one against the Rangers a few years ago does not prove Ovi is a bad defensive player. Yet all we have heard in the media was about how terrible Ovi was and how he should be stripped of his captaincy immediately. Two days of Adam Oates press conferences were devoted to this. Was Dan Blysma even asked a question about Crosby’s effort Saturday?

Meanwhile, guys like NBCSN’s Jeremy Roenick bring out the kid gloves for Sid while Crosby endures a playoff goal-less streak of 12 games. Plus, this is the second time in the last month and a half that Crosby has not shown maximum effort on a goal.

So let’s recap:

  • Sidney Crosby gives up on a play in the playoffs and no one cares.
  • Ovi does the same in garbage time in the regular season, and it’s a firestorm.
  • Everyone hates Sasha.
  • This play does not make Sid a bad defensive player. It’s just one play in one game and not indicative of anything other than the fact that there are cameras everywhere and no one misses anything.
  • I am not criticizing Crosby. I am criticizing the media, who sometimes suck.

So kids, be wary of the narrative and critical of the people who cover your teams.

  • Zach S.

    WHERE’S YOUR GOD NOW, PIERRE MCGUIRE?

  • Cody Parker

    Ovechkin glided through the defensive zone with his arms limp, even before the goal was scored. Crosby’s a tool, but #8′s gif is still worse.

  • Yo8

    This has happen twice with Crosby but I bet Yahoo won’t mention this without mentioning Ovi’s gif even when that one happened last year.

  • Yo8

    You should see Crosby’s first fuck up of the year. Where is that gif?

  • kyle boyd

    I know and will never doubt the special kind of player crosby is. i just hate A. his personality, and B. how he’s revered by the hockey media and uninformed fan alike. Was really pissed at what the CBC panel had to say about ’87′ (he’s only a number when he plays bad). first they assuaged his scoring troubles by saying he has a “boatload” of assists. because an 6 assists in 7 games is a boatload now. they commented on how his “compete level” isn’t “where it usually is” and wondered if it was his equipment. then they progressively started shift blame on him as the intermissions carried on, ending with the pre-OT intermission them going so far as to say “the penguins can’t win this game unless 87 steps it up” Then cherry shows the video of his 3 goals against yesterday afternoon during the habs game, pointing out how it wasn’t his fault on any of the goals. In reality, he looked at least partially to blame for 2 of the 3. Cherry just suspended the defensive zone role of a center for sid and acted like he was supposed to be playing high in the slot like a winger.

    also fun facts,67% of crosby’s points come on the power play, where ovy’s point totals were being questioned because nearly half came with the man advantage. similarly his -.714/g is considerably worst than ovechkin’s -0.448/g. but its okay, because as one expert mentioned, crosby’s statistic is skewed by the 3 SHG he’s been on ice for…

  • Cody Parker

    Not sure what you’re referring to, but I would like to see it.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland
  • Karina Saint

    Review the shorthanded goals Crosby gave up against Columbus and you will see more gif opportunities lol

  • Cody Parker

    That’s a lot more entertaining than the above gif, not sure where I was when that came out.

  • HartKiller_09

    I’m getting tired of continually hearing how Crosby’s hurt. If Ovechkin’s 8 games into the playoffs without a goal nobody’s speculating he’s hurt to cover for him. Actually, Malkin, who was hurt to end the season, got the CBC video package highlighting his mistakes with the now traditional “he’s gotta be better than that”, while at the same time they’re falling all over themselves to cover for Crosby. And hey, he has one of the worst plus/minus ratings in the playoffs – no chat about that? Because from what Crosby fans were saying this year, plus/minus is a flawless and important statistic that tells you everything you need to know about a player, not just as a player, but as a human-being. Bad plus/minus = bad person.

  • Shameless Ovechkin Apologist

    I think the main “problem” with Ovi’s defense is the way he seems to just go slack in the defensive zone. The fact that he looks like he’s giving up on the play even though there’s little he can do to stop the goal makes him look hilariously bad. That, combined with his horrid plus-minus, makes it very easy for pundits and bloggers alike to cherry pick lowlights and declare that Ovi “never play’s defense like ever”.

    Not saying he’ll win a Selke anytime soon, but I think changing his posture in the defensive zone would go a long way for Ovi, even if its just for his image.

  • Karina Saint

    There are only 11 players in the playoffs with a worse +/- than Crosby out of 320 something lol

  • Owen Johnson

    He was probably just devising a strategy to be gritty and work his butt off later. Just like all good ole Canadian boys.
    When Ovi does it he’s probably only thinking about partying just like all dirty Russians.

  • Owen Johnson

    End of the comment is definitely over the top. I love it anyway.

  • HartKiller_09

    Crosby had an assist in game 4 against Columbus where his touching the puck happened so far behind the scoring play he was literally the last guy in the celebration. I have no idea if this is true, or how one would go about finding out, but a friend of mine claims Crosby was 5th in primary assists this year.

    All I can say for sure is that if Ovechkin won the scoring race with the same numbers Crosby had this year they’d still be pointing to his plus minus (over 100 points and he’s only plus 18?) and they’d be saying he padded his stats with cheap assists.

    The way CBC covers Crosby is sickening, to the point where I wonder if they’re instructed to make sure he’s never criticized or looks bad.

  • Owen Johnson

    I think changing nationalities would help too.

  • Barrett

    Good thing that was Jack Hillen and not Mike Green in the Caps-Rags gif, everyone would be having a melt down about how he can’t defend a 2v1.

  • HartKiller_09

    Ovechkin’s a plus player for his career and he’s never came remotely close to minus 36. But to listen to Canadians talk it’s his horrid plus/minus year in and year out that’s caused the Capitals failures.

  • 70Caps

    I just tallied up (to my judgement) how ovi scored his goals this season: (using this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYJ0ET5xQZA&list=PLTbexfqqV0aJF7KsqUjuFKeyXXhHjYtmY )

  • VeggieTart

    Yeah, but Crosby is similarly bad in the defensive zone, and the hockey media doesn’t say how horrid he is on defense. How many of his 100+ points were secondary assists. And how many were on the power play?

    It would be nice if Ovi were better defensively, but the outrage is that a certain whiny Canadian is similarly bad and doesn’t get half the criticism the Russian does.

  • HartKiller_09

    I don’t know if this has been mentioned before, but Brett Hull made a career out of sniping from that same place on the ice. Adam Oates was Hull’s set-up man in St.Louis. Maybe that’s why he moved Ovechkin to the right side? Maybe having him lingering by the circle waiting for a one-timer was a coaching decision and not just Ovechkin doing whatever he wanted to do because he’s not Canadian.

  • HartKiller_09

    Canadian logic – if you spend your careering sitting in front of the net scoring garbage goals or goals that happened to hit you and go in because you don’t have the talent to do much else, you’re a hero. If you score most of your goals by sniping one timers from the faceoff circle you suck because anyone could do that.

  • yv

    Crosby is a great player but just for notice, when Crosby was on ice during regular season Pens allowed 51 goals at even strength. When Ovi was on ice at ES, Caps gave up 60 goals. Considering better Pens Dmen and GT, especially during first half of the season the difference between Ovi and Crosby is really minuscule. It should be also noted for those who poking Ovi for his +/- stats, that Crosby not scoring overall during last 12 playoffs games and he is -5 in this year 7 POs games, or on pace for more than – 50 for 82 games season. Furthermore, Crosby has overall minus 11 in 27 games of the last 3 postseasons with -3, -3 (even despite scoring 7 goals and 15 points in 14 games, which meant Pens allowed a lot of goals at ES when he was on ice) and -5 record.

  • 70Caps

    I was just wondering how it would add up. But if you are hitting one timers in all day and the other team can’t stop you, and you’re doing it better than anyone else currently is on the planet, and you are making up most of your team’s offense, then you should at least be in contention for mvp.

  • 70Caps

    It’s a perfectly legitimate strategy if it works.

  • 70Caps

    You’ve got to admit, though, Cherry does his job extraordinarily well. He’s paid to get viewers, not to form thoughts and words that actually make any sense. And Cbc doesn’t care if the half of the viewers that aren’t worshiping him are criticizing him.

  • Freedoooom

    Only difference being that Ovechkin was literally the farthest Capitals from Stepan….

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland

    [You might wanna think before you say things, because the person who made that GIF might be a little insulted. Haha]

  • Cody Parker

    My comment isn’t regarding the quality of the gif itself, just the entertainment value of the clip.

    Wait, what am I saying, any clip with the Pens getting scored on is a good clip!

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland

    That’s better! Haha

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com Ian Oland

    Just to be fair to Sid…

  • HartKiller_09

    Oh there’s nothing wrong with it, it’s just how it goes – any time Ovechkin does anything well certain people have to find a way to diminish it. If Ovechkin’s doing it, it’s wrong.

  • Karina Saint

    26 of Crosbys assists were secondary. That’s only counting 5on5 and 5on 4. A noticeable % of those were questioned whether he even touched the puck lol

  • Smiley456

    I just hate the way Hank Aaron gets so much credit for hitting a zillion home runs. Stand in the batter’s box, swing away, home run. Can’t he do anything else? So, one dimensional. :-)

  • Lawrence

    Well….this is a very touchy topic with me.

    The hockey media can be a complete joke when it comes to evaluating play ethnically. I hate to say it (because it looks shameful on our society) but if Ovechkin was Canadian, he would be seen without fault, much like crosby is. Do I think Ovi is a good defensive player? No I don’t. I don’t think crosby is either, but crosby plays center and its important for him to be decent defensively. Do we hear things about crosbys defense? (Last year he was voted by two homers in the top 3 for selke award) No not nearly enough, and yet all we hear about is how bad ovechkin is on defense…as a WINGER. What other player can we name that is elite offensively and good defensively as a winger? We have pretty much heard every single bad thing you can say about a player during his career and Ovi is only 28! Imagine what lies ahead. Maybe when our current generation fills seats behind the commentator booths will we see a change in North American bias. So many of these “experts” are from an era when Russia was looked at as our enemy. Coach killer? Check. Lazy? Check. Terrible defense? Check. Washed up? Check. No heart? Check. Parties too hard? Check. No work ethic? Check. Absolute joke and I wish some people with voices that mean something in the hockey world would speak up more for him (mainly our origination but instead they have used him as an excuse for failure).

    Also, defensive forwards have become so unbelievably overrated in our hockey world that its a complete joke. I’ve even seen talk around HERE that people would take Kopitar, Toews, Bergeron, over ovechkin, crosby, malkin. You would take a 50 point defensive player over a 100 point player? Let me tell you this, you can teach players to be better defensively, half of most nhl rosters are based around defense. There is only a few select players in the world that can put up the offensive numbers ovi and crosby can. People really want to see a league full of clutch and grab hockey, players dumping pucks in and changing, players breaking legs with blocking shots? Because I sure as hell don’t. I want to see players dangling through people, huge hits in open ice, sick passes through skates, wicked snipes and dirty cellys, a fast game. The league needs to encourage players to be more offensive minded, encourage players to score, encourage players to be outgoing and have personalities. The league is becoming slower and more and more dull, with defensive systems, defensive players, clutch and grab hockey, no penalties called, and less scoring than ever.

    TLDR: League needs more god damn Ovi’s.

  • 70Caps

    We should all use that more often.

  • David Weichert

    Clearly the Rangers are just using lag switches.

  • Eric Schulz

    Patrice Bergeron is absurd.
    You don’t need to know fancy stats to know how amazing he is, but when
    you do, you realize how cartoony he is on another level. Bergeron was on
    the ice for 1,157 shot attempts (Corsi) for and just 733 against for a
    league-leading 61.2 CF%. Anze Kopitar was third in that department and
    Jonathan Toews was seventh. These guys are suffocating when you’re
    heading their way and lethal when they’re heading your way. BOLD
    STATEMENT ALERT: They are very good hockey players.

    The least amount of points Kopitar has scored in a full season was 61 as a rookie (and only playing 72 games). He averages 74 points a season.

    Bergeron didn’t hit the ground running in the same way, his rookie year wasn’t nearly as impressive. But throwing out that and his 07-09 injury-marred stretch, he averages 63 points a game. That’s pretty damn good for a 2nd line C. It’s not like he couldn’t play on the top line and put up 80 points a season, but the Bruins are better off deploying Krejci there; Bergeron could do what Krejci does, but no way Krejci could do what Bergeron does.
    Interesting note: in 06-07, Bergeron’s 3rd year, he put up 70 points in 77 games, but posted a -28 rating. Pretty similar to Ovie’s numbers this year.

    Toews only played 64 games as a rookie, and 59 the year prior to the lockout, so I just pro-rated his points-per-game over an entire season: 75. Both he and Kopitar put up nearly a point-per-game (0.90 or so). None of those three are 50 point players. They are pretty easily 3 of the top 20 forwards in the league. If I was started a team, Toews, Kopitar, Datsyuk, and Bergeron would definitely be in the running for the player I’d most think about building that team around. Getzlaf, Seguin, Tavares, and Couture would be in the running too. I’d end up picking Toews because of his unique combination of scoring, defense, winning pedigree, and youth (Datsyuk and Bergeron and Getzlaf are all late-in-their-prime guys… well, that’s maybe generous to Datsyuk, but he doesn’t play his age). Tavares, Seguin, and Couture would be excellent picks too, but none bring the defense the way Toews does. Now, do I think we’d be better off swapping Ovechkin for Toews? Probably, yes, we would be. Not NEARLY as much as the most Canadien hockey media would think, but yes, Toews is a better player. HOWEVER, I think we can win with Ovechkin, we just need to surround him with better players, obviously. Last I checked, Kesler was on the trade block. If he still is, we should use some young players and prospects (and a pick if need be, although I’d like to keep this year’s 1st, I’d throw next year’s into the deal though) to acquire him. If we can resign Grabovski, I’d love a forward core of Ovechkin, Backstrom, Grabovski, and Kesler, plus youngsters like Kuznetsov and Wilson, along with 2ndary players Fehr, Brouwer, Chimera, Ward, (Laich if healthy; Penner?). Getting rid of Ovechkin would be dumb because we should be able to build a winner around him, but let’s not denigrate guys like Toews, Kopitar, and Bergeron.

  • HartKiller_09

    You forgot to point out that Ovechkin only plays for money, as opposed to all of those Canadians who play for free.

    If Crosby scored 51 goals with a minus 36 rating, they’d say his goal totals prove how good HE is, his plus minus shows how bad his TEAM his. It’s been like this since they came into the NHL, whatever Ovechkin does well doesn’t matter, whatever Crosby does well is all that matters.

    What frustrates me is that they (Canadians) speak of Ovechkin as a money driven selfish heartless egomaniac who only cares about himself as if it’s a well known fact. Nobody in the know has ever actually said it, Canadians just say it and pretend it’s fact.

    Another thing that annoyed me! During the Olympics, Ovechkin stayed behind, with the Capitals permission, because his father was in the hospital. I think he had heart surgery? Either way, he stays behind. He’s shown at a game and Jim Hughson says the Capitals are back to practice now and clearly Ovechkin wants no part of it.

  • HartKiller_09

    I find it ironic that the argument that was used to prove Crosby was better than Ovechkin (individual points and awards mean nothing, Championships and “all around play” is what counts”) can also be used to prove Toews is better than Crosby.

  • Eric Schulz

    And durability is an underrated ability, of course. (Save by Caps’ fans: not only do we use it to show that Ovechkin is better than Crosby, but we have Mike Green… we all know how dangerous this team would be if Green was durable.)

  • BrazGoalie

    Awesome gifs!
    Burst out in laughter because it trully reminds me of those moments in the nhl game on my console.
    keep it up!

  • Lawrence

    If we had Toews over ovechkin, I don’t think you would be talking about how good he is, but about how we need a scoring winger with him. The strength of the players you talked about, is their TEAM. They are arguably not even the best players on their own teams and I would say they are not, Chara, Kane, Doughty are all better players, and then there are still a few others that are close behind. Who won MVP both times Chi won the cup? Or LA? Or Bos? Hint: None of the players you named.

    Those types of players you named, thrive on a TEAM that is well built and structured. You put Toews on the caps and watch not only his stats suffer, but the success you value so highly vanish. Obviously, I think those players are great players. Top 20 for sure. But to say they are even on the same level as Ovechkin, Crosby, Malkin, Stamkos, Weber, is just ludicrous in my mind. You build around generational talent if its available to you, always. Again, defensive strengths can be taught through systems, coaches and individual adjustments. Offensive talent cannot be taught. Bergeron will never score 100 points. Toews will never have 50 goals. Kopitar will never win an art ross. Their success is based on TEAM stats alone and you would never want them over ovechkin if they didn’t win TEAM awards.

  • Phil Owen

    Totally agree with everything here EXCEPT for this – this wasn’t a few years ago, this was last year. Not only do I remember it vividly, there’s a certain #61 visible.

  • Bugs Fire

    Ovie’s plus-minus is certainly bad. Most importantly, out of 229 team goals against this season, he was on the ice for 80. The funny part it’s not even the worst among team’s forwards – that distinction belongs to Backstrom, with 81 (to be fair, Backy does PK, which Ovie doesn’t).

    This is about 35% of all the goals allowed. But when you think about, his average TOI was 20:32, which is… 34% (slightly overestimated as it does not include OT). Granted, Ovie takes a lot of PP time and was on the ice in shorthanded situation for total of 59 seconds this season, so he is still worse defensively than an average player on his team, but not nearly as horrific as he seems to be if you listen to hockey media.

    And here is another comparison. Caps team plus-minus is -21, 24th in the league (which makes the fact that they were even close to making playoffs amazing). If we are looking to compare him to a player in similar situation, Toronto (sigh) seems like a good match, with -22 (25th in the league). You remember who is their top scorer? Right, Phil Kessel, 37 goals. And here is the thing – Kessel was on the ice for 82 goals against. Have you ever, once heard this year anyone discuss how bad is Phil Kessel on defence? Right, you haven’t. I rest my case.

  • OVECHKING
  • Bugs Fire

    Next time you see awesome Chicago Black Hawks play, keep an eye on Patrick Kane. He does exactly the same “floating” Ovie does. He circles around the neutral when his team seems to be gaining the puck in their own zone. He does not rush back to defend. He also does seem to just skate around on the wing waiting for a pass. Which are all just the hallmarks of a sniper like Ovie and Kane.

    Oh and by the way, Kane’s plus-minus is +7. It sure is positive and way better than Ovie’s, but he also plays on the team that has 66 point advantage over Caps in the category. If you want to know how “bad” Patrick Kane is in plus-minus, just remember that Toews is +26. I can only wonder why former Islanders GM never had a ten-minute rant about lazy bad-defence Kane.

    (Some of this is just sarcasm – I personally believe Patrick Kane is an extraordinary player and without him Hawks would be a solid playoff contender but not the Cup-winning juggernaut that they are)

  • bskillet

    Actually Getzlaf would get my vote for the Hart.

  • Bilal

    I’m Canadian, and I love Canada, and Canadian hockey players

    But the media being so biased towards Crosby and so Negative to Ovechkin is so annoying.

  • Matt Root

    It’s odd that you mention Ovi and Crosby shouldn’t be judged the same way because of their different positions, then knock guys like Bergeron, Toews, and Kopitar for not reaching specific individual point or goal total and an art ross. Ever think that the same logic of different position, different system, etc would work in that realm of thinking? You think Ovi scores 50+ on a more defensive minded team? Not without drastically changing his play. Curious, too, that you say “defensive strengths can be taught through systems, coaches and individual adjustments. Offensive talent cannot be taught” yet through Ovi’s time, I guess no one tried. I mean, playing D is so easy that anyone could do it, yeah? Because that line of thinking, what you said, is why media jumps all over Ovi for not being better “2-way” player. FWIW, I could care less if Ovi is on the PK or some elite defender, but their is some level of commitment I’d like to see from everyone, not just Ovi, as it applies to team D.

    You were spot on, in my opinion, of the media being totally biased and contradicting.. likely xenophobic.. yet then contradict yourself by dismissing other top tier players (Berg, Kopi, and Toews) by saying it’s their team that garners their numbers. Ever consider an offensive system with the mantra of “feed Ovi” inflates or at least correlates to his numbers? Of course it does. And yet there are guys on a lock-down, suffocating system that still put up 70-80 points. Yep, I’m totally fine with that.

    PS. Kings cup run, Kopitar would have been an acceptable/likely Conn Smythe but Quick had a record setting year. Yet you use that against him.

  • Matt Root

    And like Eric said, it’s not like I feel the Caps can’t win with Ovi. Surround the guy with complimenting pieces and fix that atrocious blue line, mixed with Holtby and Grubi.. I think their is contention. But trends indicate puck possession and corsi monsters like Bergeron, Toews, and Kopitar lead to a better formula for winning. Someone said on this blog recently, that when the goals dry up, and they will because that stuff is absolutely cyclical, what then? When you have guys like Toews, Berg, and Kopi their defensive presence allows the team a greater chance of weathering the goal drought. Caps live and die by Ovi. So, yeah, clutter me in with the group that if I’m somehow thrust into a GM position in a fantasy draft scenario, I’ll pick one of those guys over Sid and Ovi.

  • Eric Schulz

    Were I the GM of the Caps, of course I wouldn’t trade Ovie… I’d build around him. I’ve mentioned this before. But yeah, he wouldn’t be my first pick in a fantasy draft.
    Speaking of Ovie’s lackluster defense… if you can watch them vs the Blues from late in the year, just watch Ovie the whole time. His defense was tremendous. He was constantly where he needed to be, he had an active stick and was *constantly* knocking the puck away from the puckhandler, and he jumped in the shooting lane a few times. He ended with 1-2–3. I wish he always played like that. We need somebody to get a highlight of those types of games, and sit Ovie down and tell him we need him to play like that. We don’t need him blocking shots (although being in the shooting lane would be nice, make them think), or backchecking like a demon, just be active, and smart. Better defense = less defense = more offense = more points. We need to surround him better, and we need a better system, obviously, but yes, it would be nice if he played like that all the time. Him not playing defense hurts less than ANY OTHER PLAYER not playing defense, because of how much his offense offsets that… but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t try, or care about defense. He’s exposed more than most players; we don’t have Keith/Seabrook back there, or Chara, or Doughty to cover for his mistakes… which is partially why the criticism is overblown (in addition to a few other factors that I won’t get into), but as we all know, it’s not without basis.

  • Shaun Phillips

    Hull did the same thing when he came to Detroit playing with 2 little-known, young kids (2 kids & an old goat line) named Datsyuk and Zetterberg. :) He’d camp in that spot while Pavs and Hank cycled everyone dizzy, one pass out and it was in the net.

  • Lawrence

    I didn’t say don’t judge Crosby for his position, I was comparing centers vs. wingers in every system that makes sense. I was making the point that because Crosby is weak as a CENTER that should be a lot worse for him in the media than Ovi, but obviously that doesn’t happen.

    When you say you would build around Kopi and Toews, you are adding in a completely new factor. If you can re-build an LA, Chi, Bos, those players will lead the pack (I even said I thought they were top 20 btw), but they will thrive if you successfully rebuild around them, sure, just like generational talent would. If you took one of those players and swapped them with ovi on the caps, I wouldn’t even be calling those players top 20 as you watch their stats decline and their team success decline. You are judging them on team success alone. You cannot compare team success between players in the NHL and decide who is a better player. It gets very tricky to compare who is better in my mind, but I think the best way is to look at who makes the biggest difference every night.

    Are you really saying that if you put Ovi on Bos, LA, etc. that he wouldn’t be capable of scoring at the rate he does with the caps? And where did you pull that out of? The blue? NBC sports talk? That’s completely hear-say and exactly what I’ve heard from biased sources, tell me what makes you think that going to a better puck possession team, where he gets MORE chances than he does now, will hurt his numbers? He had some of the worst possession stats for a top forward in the entire league, and he still blew by everyone by almost 10 goals. In a way its sad, because comments like “he wouldn’t be so good on another team,” makes me want to see him traded to a better franchise and you can see how that will turn out for all of us. He keeps the caps from being an EDM this year, and only 2-3 other players in the world could do that. Forget positions and team needs, if you trade those players for Ovi, we will be back competing for the 1st overall the way we are currently built. And don’t tell me that’s ovi’s fault the way we are built, because no, it doesn’t benefit Ovi one bit.

    I don’t know what you want me to say about this point: when you talk about suffocating defense, that’s a TEAM strategy. When you are comparing players, why would you even bring that up? Do you expect those players to come to the caps and completely change our system? That takes a coach and a gm. And try 50 – 70 point range btw, which is a huge difference and it would likely go down with the caps as their possession and people they can pass to goes down.

    Ovi, Sid, Malkin are generational offensive players that will succeed on any team they are put on, from Edm to Car, to Bos. The only argument that holds weight, is that because they are paid so highly its harder to build around them, but to say they are in anyway holding down a team because of the players they are, is just wrong and uninformed.

  • Lawrence

    So you say, given the chance, you wouldn’t want to build around ovechkin, yet you go on to prove that his defensive shortcomings are due to the system/coaches he plays for? There are many players on Chi, Bos that lack individual defensive abilities, but as you said, they are sheltered by the system and players on the back end. I would personally pick between Malkin, Crosby, Ovechkin, Weber, Stamkos, maybe one other player I consider to be a generational talent, but I would certainly not want my first pick to be a guy that’s judged almost solely on his team success. There are many players that are just as good defensively that are on much worse teams that will never get the recognition they deserve because of their lack of team success. I’ll name one for you, Koivu. Finding defensive forwards or teaching forwards to play defense correctly is much easier than finding/teaching offense.

  • Lawrence
  • Matt Root

    Lol, I’m not judging on team success at all. I never said, “oh these guys won a Cup so they MUST be > than Ovi”. I’m arguing that their playstyle transitions to any system. They can play boring trap hockey and produce or they can play more freewheeling hockey and their size, speed, playmaking, and scoring ability transitions much more fluid and leads to production. And, yes, I don’t believe Ovi hits 50+ goals on a defensive oriented team because at current state, he would be getting Dale Hunter Hockey ice time on those teams. Less time, less chances. Pretty simple logic. If the guy plays 22 minutes a game on any team, he is going to put up huge scoring numbers, Again, you’re taking what I’m saying out of context.

    It’s also funny to me that you claim I pull my “Ovi scoring less on a better team out of the blue” but somehow you’re qualified to say Berg, Toews, and/or Kopi would be 50-70 range players on the caps if they switched. Based off what? Toews plays with the likes of Kane, Sharp, and Hossa so I could understand an argument made that his production dips without those players around, but I wouldn’t say he’s not a top 20 player. Kopitar, again, has never had elite scoring linemates except for Gaborik these 19 games + playoffs. Carter is attached at the hip with Richards, so unless they’re in a drought and in need of shuffling, Kopitar is playing with the likes of Brown or Toffoli before Gaborik went to LA. And producing 70-80 points before they were even a contender. So I’m supposed to believe with Brouwer, Kuzya, Ward, Wilson, Fehr, randomlinematesthatthecapscoulduse, Kopitar would drastically change?

    The whole annoyance with your side is that you berate those who you claim show unfair bias and then do the exact same with the players of your liking. Magically, you’re capable of predicting the fall of production in a hypothetical situation for guys you deem lesser, but cannot grasp anyone doing that to Ovi. Worst part is, you make it sound like I am bashing Ovi and would trade straight up Ovi for Kopitar or Berg or Toews. That is not what I’ve said at all. The Caps have chosen, and rightly so based on the draft, to build around Ovi. Except they’ve done an awful job at building around him and then tried to play styles that don’t fit him. (while those styles would fit people I’ve mentioned).

    Also, where did I say Ovi, Malkin, and Sid aren’t generational players? But I do see many teams in serious cup contention consistently as of late without a generational star. So value what you want.

  • Dio

    Kyle, Sid had 38 power play points – one less than Ovi. How do you get 67%?

  • Eric Schulz

    I said that, given the chance, my first pick would NOT be Ovechkin. I said you could build a Cup winner around him, but he wouldn’t be my FIRST choice, that’s all.
    And I wasn’t basing off of team success. Toews is one of the best combinations of offense and defense in the league (he finished 7th in Corsi this year among all players, as I mentioned, and is nearly a point-per-game player), and he’s also young enough that he may even have another gear. The fact that he’s widely considered one of the best leaders, and possibly the best captain, in the game is merely a massive bonus; two Cup rings doesn’t hurt either. But without that, I still take him because he’s still the best combination of offense, defense, and youth in the league.

  • Dio

    I’m surprised to see how much anti-Crosby vitriol there is in these comments. While Crosby may get off easy sometimes, I still think it’s fair to say Ovechkin deserves more criticism. Ovechkin is a selfish player who always thinks shot whether it’s there or not. While you can point to some isolated incidents of Crosby not playing great defence, he is generally good in his own zone, while Ovechkin is non-existent (and that’s according to his own coach who was boosting him for the Hart last year, not the evil media). Since coming into the league, Crosby has worked hard to improve on his defensive play, faceoffs, and the other little things that help a team win. Ovechkin hasn’t evolved at all.

    The media is perhaps a bit softer on Crosby, but in part that’s because when he is not playing great in all facets of the game, it’s an anomaly. With Ovechkin, it’s more of the same so he gets cut less slack. That said, the “what’s wrong with Crosby” theme has been pretty front and centre this playoffs, so it’s not like nobody says anything when he’s not performing.

  • Eric Schulz

    Crosby is a selfish player too. He’s always trying to score points and stuff.

    Also, when Crosby is in a slump, it’s “you can see it” (the end of the slump) “coming.” He’s praised for leading his team, because he had 6 shots! Literally, I heard that. Ovechkin goes in a slump, and it’s “he needs to be better,” etc. Nobody’s actually saying “what’s wrong with Crosby?” They are saying “he’s working hard,” “this is the best game I’ve seen from him in the playoffs so far,” “things are going to turn around soon, you can feel it,” etc. “Perhaps a bit softer on Crosby?” Even when talking about Crosby slumping, all he gets is praise for trying, and working hard, and getting chances. When talking about Ovechkin leading the league in goals by a wide margin, it’s never about just that, it’s always about where he’s deficient (honestly, I haven’t heard a single person outside of RMNB mention how crazy Ovie’s goal scoring lead was this year). Sure, criticize him when he deserves it, but there’s never any true praise for him.

    Ovechkin is one of the best players in the game, and he NEVER gets praise. The only coverage you’ll hear of Ovechkin outside of Washington writers/blogs by fans is criticism. I actually heard an announcer say that Stamkos was a better GOAL-SCORER than Ovechkin because he plays 200 feet! Where the FUCK is Stamkos scoring from?

  • kyle boyd

    referring to his post season point total this year

  • Smiley456

    Agreed! I’ll take “one dimensional” OV every day!

  • Eric Schulz

    Crosby just scored a goal because he was hovering near the blueline, not anywhere near the puck, waiting for his teammates to control it. They took it away from the Rangers, he took off and scored a goal (meanwhile, the announcer mentioned that he “took a stick to the ribs” when Staal kind of waved his stick at Crosby’s hands, grazing his gloves… but I guess the announcer wasn’t satisfied that Crosby scored, he has to deify him because of how gritty and tough he is). If that’s Ovie, he’s “not playing defense,” or “hovering” or whatever. Because it’s Crosby, people realize that there’s nothing wrong anticipating the play and then being an outlet for your defenseman.

  • Jonah

    i think the problem with OV is that he’s expected to be a toews type leader while playing like Kane. if he had toews with him to shore up on D and feed him passes all day Ov wouldn’t be the “one-dimensional lazy scoring stupid russian” he would be the guy who can score like crazy.
    the problem is that the team captain can’t be the person who’s just there to score.

  • Eric Schulz

    Eh… to be fair to Backstrom, while he’s not Toews, he’s quite good. The problem lies more in not having the Keith, Seabrook, Hjalmarsson, Oduya depth the ‘Hawks have. We’ve also had some bad luck, of course. The ‘Hawks have superwingers in Hossa and Sharp too… we had Semin but let him leave (not as good as Hossa probably, Hossa is/was maybe the best top-6 winger in the league at offense and defense, although Semin had as much talent as anyone… I don’t let him off the hook, but certainly I blame him less than most Caps fans seem to. What if we had Ribeiro to center him, or Grabovski? We really didn’t give him any linemates that would help to get him any consistency). And Laich probably isn’t as good as Sharp, but he could fill that kind of role for us, except he’s been injured now…
    If we could only take Grabovski, Alzner, Carlson, and Holtby from now and put them on the ’07-’10 Caps teams…

  • Jonah

    to be fair to the stamkos argument it is very very difficult to score when you spend 3+ months in crutches.
    i think GPG they are pretty close and a healthy OV vs healthy Stammer scoring race next year will be highlight-reel pornography.

  • Jonah

    yeah i completely agree with you but i didn’t want to spend another night ranting about the caps defense (after 5+ months it gets old).
    also, the universal rule of hockey bullshittery says that Backstrom isn’t a viable defensive forward because he’s swedish and thats basically russian ergo he’s lazy and doesn’t play defense and only tries to pad his PP assist stats.
    wow that felt good to get off my chest.
    also, eric, i think we spent the past week ranting at each other even though we pretty much agree on what we’re saying and just arguing for the sake of arguing

  • CapsKel

    This argument is so stupid. I love Ovi, but how many times has Crosby made a bad defensive play this year? How many times has Ovi? I get the anti-foreign media bias and Ovi is my guy, but this is a terrible point of comparison. Crosby is defensively solid most of the time. He was annoyingly good and ~inspirational~ last game. He scored tonight.

  • Lawrence

    Good points. Of course this is just our opinions and your lack of qualification are the same as mine, so sorry for that and no point playing that game. And we are both are agreeing that these players are top of the league, so when we are arguing who is better, its obviously going to be close both ways. What I honestly don’t understand is how you could say those players aren’t based on success of a team, what specific cases of bad teams that they have been on that you could use to prove your point? They have all been on successful teams that are based around puck control, strong defense, and amazing depth.

    I don’t see any reason why you would assume ovechkin’s numbers would drop, on a team that he would have the puck MORE. Hunter hockey proved nothing in this case. Hunter hockey was not the type of hockey that any of those teams play, in fact quite the opposite, closer comparison would be Montreal in 2010. Hunter hockey was completely skill less and based around clogging the front of the net. BTW, who led those playoffs for the caps in points I wonder…hmm.

    You may be surprised by this, but many players on LA, Bos, Chi are bad individual defensive players, but they are covered up by a system and depth. Ill name some for you, Kane, Carter, Lucic, Marchand and there are many more, but those are top 6 players. Ovechkin would fit right in with those teams and he would get more chances to score. Ovechkin has been at a complete disadvantage his entire career when it comes to depth (maybe the only exception is when semin was scoring 40 goals on the second line). Again, defense can be taught. Ovi was drafted as a 2 way forward. Show me one goal where Ovechkin’s lack of defense has resulted in a goal for him this year. Let me tell you right now, don’t waste your time, it didn’t happen. There is no reason to assume ovechkin’s numbers drop one bit and in fact stats would tell you the exact opposite. So go ahead and explain to me why you think that is the case.

    Again, comparing players is very tricky because there are so many factors, what an individual team needs, etc. You say, “Worst part is, you make it sound like I am bashing Ovi and would trade straight up Ovi for Kopitar or Berg or Toews,” are you not saying this? Because this is what I have been getting from your posts. “Ever consider an offensive system with the mantra of “feed Ovi” inflates or at least correlates to his numbers? Of course it does. And yet there are guys on a lock-down, suffocating system that still put up 70-80 points.”

    I ask you this, if you take Kopi, Toews, Berg, off their team are they still in the playoffs? Of course. You take ovi off the caps and they are fighting for first overall. You swap those players and watch the same thing happen. I can’t believe you compared those players supporting cast with ours on the caps. I will let that slide, because that is absolutely ludicrous but I think you know that. Ovi has never had the support that those players have, and he still outperforms them offensively, by a hefty margin.

  • Dio

    Okay, but that’s a pretty small sample size, and nobody is saying that Sidney is playing well. The regular theme I am hearing is “what’s wrong with Crosby?” The point is, it’s uncharacteristic for Crosby to be so tentative and not competing hard in every aspect of the game. He’s got it done in the playoffs and in big games before. Ovi on the other hand hasn’t been able to lead his teams to success, and his effort at everything except padding his own goal stats is usually (rather than uncharacteristically) lax. That’s why people are more likely to give Crosby the benefit of the doubt versus Ovechkin. I’m not saying there is absolutely no bias in the Canadian media, but I would also say a lot of it can be attributed to Crosby working harder to earn his positive reputation.

  • Dio

    As far as your sarcastic comment about how Crosby is selfish too because he’s trying to score points, there is a critical distinction. Crosby makes the players around him better and works with his linemates. He is concerned with his team scoring goals, while Ovechkin is only concerned with himself scoring goals. He’s the type of guy that would be happy about a 4-3 loss as long as he gets a hat trick. That’s probably not fair, but it certainly looks like that sometimes. He shoots way too much, even where passing to a teammate would be a better option, and he puts all his energy into goal scoring to the exclusion of other important aspects of the game.

    As far as the commentary, I think you are guilty of some selective memory and confirmation bias. I haven’t watched nearly as much playoffs this year as in years past, but I’ve still managed to hear plenty of comments about Crosby lacking intensity, not playing like himself, not stepping up, etc. I’ll admit there may be a slight media bias, but as I explained in my response to Kyle Boyd, a lot of that comes down to earning the benefit of the doubt by working hard to round out his game and by getting it done in the past. Fairly or not, star players will get criticized quicker when their team hasn’t got it done in the playoffs.

    Ovechkin never gets praised? Really? Again, I think there’s lots of selective memory/confirmation bias going on here. When he won the Hart last year (a trophy awarded by media), he was getting praise all around for putting his team on his shoulders down the stretch. The hockey writers were fawning over him so much that they ended up voting him an all-star at two positions (which maybe makes one question their credibility, but the praise was there all the same). I also think back to the first few years of their careers where the debate raged as to “would you take Ovi or Crosby”. At that time, Ovechkin was a media darling and had tons of people who said they would take him over Crosby. Since then, Crosby has improved his game all around and won a championship, while Ovechkin has not evolved at all or had great team success, and he gets criticized more as a result.

    I am not trying to say that Ovi is not a great player, because he is – probably one of the best goal scorers ever. I just don’t buy into the idea that the criticisms are unfair; unfortunately he’s only great at one thing. Even if you believe the criticism is unfair, I’m not sure how that leads to hating Crosby just because you feel the media is not equally unfair to him. I think the arguments about Ovi getting a rough ride would be more effective if you left Crosby out of it. The attempt to frame the argument in terms of comparing him to Crosby is counterproductive because Crosby is a more complete player with a cup under his belt, and the slack he gets doesn’t really speak to whether the Ovi criticisms are unfair. The Crosby bashing reeks of jealousy.

  • Matt Root

    Round and round conversations are pointless. Even more so when you pick and choose phrases to change meanings. Never compared kings roster to Caps. I made the assertion that Kopitar has traditionally never been lined with elite talent. Except gaborik for 19 games and these playoffs. Meaning, the hypothetical could Kopitar produce along his career averages which predate the kings cup contender roster, if he were on the caps? Yep. Believe he could meet those goals. But it’s easier to skew words I suppose. Everything else you’ve said I’ve mentioned. Offensive players have roles on defensive oriented teams but they’re all anchored by 2 way centers and a system of D focused hockey. But again, you nitpick phrases as if I’m making a comparison in rosters or talent, which I haven’t. It’s not even worth defending the caps roster because there is no identity ala no GM or coach to indicate what direction the team will head and who will fit. Ps. Kings often revert to trap hockey. :)

    Agree to disagree or whatever. Enjoy your evening/day.

  • Eric Schulz

    But that wasn’t remotely his argument; his argument was only that Ovechkin didn’t play 200 feet. Also, while obviously I’m biased, Ovechkin is one of the 5 best goal scorers in the history of the game right now when you factor in era-scoring, he’s maybe 2nd best all time… that should drop as he ages obviously, but he’s older than Stamkos; Stamkos will drop more. Comparing Ovechkin as a past-his-prime 28 year old goal scorer vs an in-his-prime Stamkos (23/24) isn’t going to be fair anyway, but Ovechkin still has more the last few years. Ovie’s durability is why I still think he’s a better player than Crosby (this year, obviously Crosby had a better season, but if I could choose either over the next 3-4 years, I take Ovechkin knowing he has a great chance of playing 78+ games every year, while Crosby may not even play 60% of the games in any given season. It’d be hard to take Crosby anyway due to my bias, but I don’t feel it’s impossible to argue for Ovechkin over Crosby, even now).

  • Eric Schulz

    A few points to be made…

    1 – Absolutely, it would be better if we could just look at a player on his own merits. The problem is that it’s impossible to not look at any player without context, and these two will always draw comparisons. And since Crosby gets credit for winning the Cup even though Malkin won the Conn Smythe… Ovechkin was a better playoff performer than Crosby, easily, over that span (until Dale Hunter took over, really). Had Ovechkin been the 2nd best player on his team in the playoffs, then he has a Cup as well. It’s an unfair comparison, and rankles more than a little bit. Also, really the crux of the matter, to me, is that the criticism Ovechkin receives is ridiculous; Kane never gets crap for “floating” or not backchecking properly, nor does Kessel. Crosby just seems to be the polar opposite; since he seems to not get criticized even when he deserves it, and since these players are probably the two biggest faces in the NHL, it’s easy to compare and contrast them.

    2 – I don’t mean “always” and “never” obviously. But for brevity’s sake, I don’t say “most of the time” etc. To some degree, I get why that can be misleading and make me seem like too much of a homer. However, given the [relatively] measured approach of the rest of my comments (at least, I hope), I hope I earn the benefit of the doubt of the majority of those who read my comments.
    On that note, as much as I love sports, I’ve really done a great job of paying less attention to bad/sensationalistic sports news and sports media over the last handful of years. I very rarely go on espn.com now… I stick to the relatively few savvy sites and writers (that tend to have savvier readership, naturally). And even then, I see very little praise for Ovechkin, and very little criticism of Crosby. I don’t necessarily need the latter, but when Crosby gets a pass for doing what Ovechkin gets ripped for, again, it rankles all the more. If Ovechkin received a more measured and fair treatment (he’s by no means a perfect player, I’ve admitted that many times; I know he’s below average defensively. As a Caps’ fan, I wish he always played defense like he did vs the Blues this last season at the end of the year, it’s frustrating that he half-asses it as much as he does) than I wouldn’t care about comparing him to Crosby; the problem is when the double standard rears its head. Two obvious examples: Ovechkin’s controller disconnected GIF. He gets ripped; Crosby did the same thing… he’s done it twice now, including recently in the playoffs, and nobody cares (outside of Caps fans, making the same complain that I am: you don’t need to criticize Crosby, but why only ONE player?). The Caps were scored on by a man that WASN’T Ovechkin’s man. Ovechkin was out of position – he should’ve been FURTHER from the play – yet he gets ripped. Now, obviously my bias may play a role here, but… I mean, he’s close enough he at least could’ve tried to make a play. A better defensive player maybe prevents that goal (Marian Hossa?). But, it also wasn’t his man. It WAS Crosby’s man the latter time… the former, it was on the PP, and it should’ve been a 1-on-2, but thanks to Crosby’s lack of effort, it was instead 1-on-1 (so, not technically his man, but they weren’t playing man-to-man, obviously). It’s just a little unfair, especially considering Crosby gets the benefit of the doubt for playing center; people give him credit for being better defensively partially because he plays a position that demands more defense, yet Ovechkin seems to be held to the higher standard here.
    The second example is a much better one, I think; did you see Crosby’s goal in game 3 vs the Rangers? He hovered near the blueline, in no way supporting his defense. He then saw the Penguins retrieve the puck, and he took off and scored on a semi-break. Now, to me, there’s nothing wrong with that. Correctly anticipating the takeaway by your team, then being an outlet for your defender to create an offensive opportunity is what you *should* do; 1 – you help him to move the puck and clear the zone easily, and 2 – you start the break and create an opportunity the other way. However, when Ovechkin does it, he’s “cheating” and “cherry-picking.” Again, due to Ovechkin’s relatively small role in defense due to his position, in general, you’d expect him to be hovering near the blueline more.
    3 – I’m sure my experience isn’t the same as everybody else’s, but I find it hard to believe that everybody else’s is *vastly* different than mine: during Crosby’s playoff slump (he was still putting up assists, in his defense, but he went… 17 games?… without a goal. BTW, he was -11 over a 27 game playoff span, too, but nobody cared… again, a double standard), in the last two games, all I heard was stuff like “this is the best I’ve seen him play” [during the slump], “the effort level is there” “you can see it coming” (“it” being the end of his slump, the goal that would end his slump foreshadowed by him creating chances), etc. At the end of game 2, the analysts said that he inspired his teammates because he had 6 shots. Ovechkin doesn’t get the same treatment. Considering their respective roles, again it’s dumb that the standard seems to be so different.
    Really, if you held Crosby to a HIGHER standard, then it’d make much more sense to call him the better player even if you criticized him MORE; you expect more defense, you expect him to LEAD more (since by dint of his position, his role on the team is to set up other players and create opportunities for teammates whereas Ovechkin, as a winger, is asked much more to be a goal-scorer, and he isn’t really expected to make his teammates better in the same way Crosby would/should, even though they are both the Captain of their respective team. In Ovechkin’s defense, he average 52 assists through his first.. 5? 6?.. seasons in the league. He has, in my opinion, less talented teammates now than he did then – or, in the case of Green and Laich, more banged up ones – and even if not, then certainly less productive ones, as far as producing points is concerned. I think he gets too little credit as far as: Crosby setting up teammates while still being a threat to score a goal himself is the best way he can help his team win. Ovechkin scoring goals while still being a dangerous playmaker if need be is the best way HE can help his team win. That was my whole point with the “selfish” thing; EVERY player in the NHL is selfish; who cares? If you are making your team better, then what difference does it make?

    You say Ovechkin shoots too much? Again, he shot the same while also recording an average of 52 assists per year through his first 5 or 6 years in the league. Shooting in the NHL is *hard,* every player would love to be able to shoot as much as Ovie does. If it was easy, everybody would be shooting that much, and scoring 40+ goals a year. Again, Ovechkin gets criticized for something that doesn’t make sense; if he shot less, the team would be worse for it. Sure, other players wouldn’t be as effective if they looked to shoot as much as Ovie does, but he’s not them; he’s one of the few players who can be effective while looking to shoot this much.

    You say Ovechkin hasn’t evolved. Well, sure… but he also just finished a season in which he scored goals in his age-28 season at a level similar to what he was doing through his age 22-24 seasons; that’s nearly unprecedented… Mike Bossy is the only player who’s been as effective a goal scorer past the prime goal-scoring age of 24. What he’s doing has only been done once before. So while he hasn’t evolved, the fact that he hasn’t gotten worse is pretty insane (obviously his points are down, but he’s had very different coaching – worse coaching – and a different roster during that span. As much as we can factor that in, he’s clearly at least as effective of a goal-scorer as he used to be, and that’s pretty obviously the thing he has the most control over, unlike assists or +/-, when he relies much more on teammates and systems). Purely as a goal scorer, he hasn’t declined nearly as much as he should’ve, and that’s impressive. Now, I don’t expect many analysts to touch on this, of course; people don’t seem to realize how quickly goal scorers typically decline. However, I’m pointing it out here to, again, give him credit that he doesn’t seem to typically get. In this case, I’m not arguing that there’s any double standard; other goal scorers will get the same treatment. That doensn’t mean it isn’t noteworthy though.
    Now, flipside: do I wish he had evolved as a defensive presence? Obviously. But I don’t need to make the argument for that. I don’t need to point out what is wrong about Ovechkin’s game; I won’t be criticizing him too much. That’s not because I think he’s perfect, or the best player in the league, I simply don’t need to address the things that everybody knows. I hate being accused of having my bias blind me; I know he’s bad defensively, the purpose of arguing this is to put forth those things that he’s good at that he gets too little credit for (and Crosby serves as a pretty good counter-point, since he seems to be on the other end of the spectrum in that regard).

    When Ovechkin won the Hart last year, I didn’t hear a single person say he deserved it; it was all “he didn’t even play well for the first half of the year” (the year was 4 weeks long, I guess). Obviously SOME people think he deserved it; he won. But I didn’t hear analysts praise him one time for it. Now, does that mean they NEVER did? Of course not. But I have to conclude that it’s been rare; I highly doubt they are praising him until I turn on the tv, or click on an article.

    “The Crosby bashing reeks of jealousy.” Absolutely; I am jealous of the way Crosby is portrayed by the media; I wish Ovechkin was treated the same way: praised for being the best in the league at what he does, rather than criticized for the things he doesn’t. He’s the best goal scorer in the league, the highest volume shooter, an underrated passer, always in the top-10 in hits, and he’s a virtual lock to play 78+ games a year. There’s value in that.

  • Lawrence

    I’m just debating who I think the better player is and why. You originally responded to my post saying you didn’t agree with my analysis of that, so why you’re acting like a victim I don’t know. Things you accuse me of, you are doing the same thing, only I am not making it personal by calling you out for it like you have done on everyone of your posts. But since you want me to, “Never compared kings roster to Caps.” “Kopitar is playing with the likes of Brown or Toffoli before Gaborik went to LA. And producing 70-80 points before they were even a contender. So I’m supposed to believe with Brouwer, Kuzya, Ward, Wilson, Fehr,” you see now?

    As you say, there’s no point debating anymore, this went from arguing who is more valuable, better player to just repeating the same things again and again. My original argument was just that two-way forwards have become overrated, because so much of their success is based off of team awards. It comes off to me that you are arguing for a player based on team awards, even though you have said you’re not repeatedly (doesn’t make it true). You have brought up very little individual achievements they have, other than saying he had no linemate help in the 2011-2012 cup Kings team, despite Doughty who almost outscored him in the playoffs, Brown who tied him in points, Williams who was amazing, and a second line that had Carter and Richards on it, not to mention a system and depth on the back-end. Even with all that help, he wouldn’t of sniffed the cup without Quick in goal. That is where my argument lies with you. If ovechkin was on that team and had that support, they win the cup easier.

    Obviously, everyone has their own opinion and in all honesty I could care less that you or anyone else thinks Kopi, Toews, or Berg are better players, but if you respond to a post where I say that, I am going to ask why. None of this means you are wrong and it doesn’t mean I’m right. I’m not going to debate it anymore, as it is slowly becoming you belittling my posts with the victim act and that’s no fun.

  • Jon A

    Maybe in this article’s GIF it looks worse for Ovie. However, in this really good Yahoo/Puck Daddy article about about the “highlight culture” of sports news, Crosby is coasting from a lot farther out and being pretty lazy. Your’re right tough Y08, it does mention this same GIF of Ovie too.

    Puck Daddy:
    https://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/puck-daddy/sidney-crosby–alex-ovechkin-and-the-disconnected-xbox-controller-180131158.html

  • Jon A

    I think the above Crosby GIF is great, BTW. Props to “whoever” made it. It not only shows Crosby’s laziness and how far out of position he was, but I enjoy the fact that you can see that the whole Pen’s forward line had given up on the back-check too… Makes me wish I had my Deadguins shirt on right now.

  • Mike Legacy

    That GIF doesn’t tell me that Ovie is a terrible defensive player. The fact that he scores more goals than anyone else and is STILL a huge MINUS in plus/minus tells me he is a terrible defensive player.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    Mike,

    I see you work in technology. That’s good. People who work in tech are usually good self-directed learners. Lemme point in you in three directions for your continued education:

    1. the usefulness of plus-minus in measuring a player’s defense

    2. the usefulness of Sv% over goalie wins, which you apparently disagree with — http://penslabyrinth.com/2013/08/04/pens-opening-day-starter-fleury-or-vokoun/#comment-1029619783, which reminds me…

    3. how DISQUS tracks your comments across multiple sites, so that we know you’ve said really hateful, misogynist stuff that might and should hinder your ability to get work in the future – http://rollingout.com/shame-on-you/woman-admits-infecting-300-guys-hiv-virus/#comment-1363334993

  • Mike Legacy

    Yepp, totally a misogynist for saying some dumb bitch who infected 300 people with HIV deserves to burn in hell….if that were a guy, you would all be saying that.

    As for Plus/Minus, overall the stat is stupid and can’t pinpoint the exact usefulness of someone on both sides of the puck, but honestly, -35? There’s not excuse for that. None at all.

    Congratulations on believing you are cool.

  • Mike Legacy

    And you’re right, I disagree with SV% over wins. Why? Wins are all that matters in the end.

  • Den pryanic

    Crosby is not just American. It would have hated it too. The whole world hates Americans and Russian)))

    Excuse me, use Google translator