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I remember where I was when Sydney Crosby scored the ‘golden goal’. I also remember the text I sent one of my friends shortly after we took gold….

It said, “Best player in the world. Period.”

My friend and I had been going back and forth about Ovechkin and Crosby for a few weeks leading up to the 2010 Olympics. Anytime we were together, and the discussion turned to hockey, we would eventually end up on this topic. Both of us had real good cases for our respective player, so it was a fun debate. Now? Not so much of a hot button issue…..

The Pittsburgh Penguins played the Washington Capitals this week, and lets just say, not quite the nail-biter it used to be. Crosby was his usual dynamic self, collecting 2 assists, and Ovechkin did score and had some looks, but, you could tell this “rivalry” is more marketing now than anything. Remember when these two teams were the ones to watch in the playoffs? Before Pitt v Philly? Would the real Alex Ovechkin please stand up?

While Ovechkin has declined to human status, Crosby has reset the wonky noggin, and gone all elite on the NHL again. I don’t think there is any doubt who the best player in the world is anymore. While his concussion set him back, and put his #1 status in question, Crosby has come into this shortened season a man possessed. Art Ross and Hart trophies? Dust off the mantle Sid……

Ovechkin? I guess 30 goals a year will have to do now. This guy came into the league, and absolutely tore it a new one. This guy was hitting 60 goals a year when Stamkos was in high school, and now 35 is a wasted season. The fall is like a Ken Griffey Jr. style drop from greatness. Still one of the best, but leaves way too much on the table. I’m not sure if he’ll ever get to Crosby level good again, and that’s a damned shame. I don’t know if its money, or desire, but whatever made Ovie great is gone. Hard to get that back….

The 2010 Olympics gave us a few things to cheer about. The ass kicking Canada laid on Russia was one of them. Was that the game that broke the dynamic Russian’s spirit? He hasn’t looked the same since. Would returning the favor to Canda on their home soil be the remedy he needs to get that gear back? I hope so. If there is one thing I want to see in Sochi, it is a Canada v Russia gold medal match. A rejuvenated Ovie is another, although another golden goal would look nice on Sid’s resume too;) I’ll take what I can get…

Crosby will wear the C in Sochi. He will be the unquestion leader on a team that will be loaded with NHL captains and elite players. A year and a half ago, you might have said, “If he’s healthy, he’ll be on the team.” Now, its “he is our team.”

Good to be back on top…..

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