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jammer2

Why is so hard to play with Crosby....

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  OK, I think we have some of the best hockey minds in the world here.....let's come up with some theories....

 

 1) He thinks the game at such an advanced level that his linemates can't keep up mentally. In other words, his vision of what should happen does not transpire due to his linemates inability to see the game like he does.

 

 2) His lack of ice time has thrown off his game. Like a finely tuned car, the more it runs, the better it handles. His total shifts are down, and the length of his shifts are shorter....thus he can't get his motor revved sufficiently.

 

 3) This is my new favourite. Marian Hossa thinks that Sid plays on his backhand more than any other player, thus his linemates are confused on where the sweet spot is for a potential passing lane.  They just don't know how to position themselves properly because they are used to players using the forehand pass, where Sid usually goes to his backhand by second nature. There is some validity to this I believe. It's not like these stars don't recieve back hand passes, but Crosby does utilize it more than most. He also fends of checkers on his backhand side quite often, and this may be new to his linemates. Of course, the lefty vs righty comes into play also...but this is interesting.

 

 Perhaps it's a combination of 3, or there is one we missed and has not been listed yet...

 

 OK....let's get this over with....4) cause Sid is gay (NTTAWWT).....LOL!

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@jammer2

 

 I'll eliminate the first two with...see Gretzky, Orr, Mario etc etc.

 

 The only Canadian forwards who have looked good IMO are Tavares, Toews, Getzlaf, Carter. The first three aren't exactly lighting it up either, but are playing well.

 

 Maybe it's just that everyone gets up for playing Canada? I don't know.

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How about this, he has dumbed down his game to raise the level of the less talented players he plays with in Pgh, when he's skating with other elite talent , they're faster , have vision similar to his, have better hands and skill than he is used to , as a result he puts the puck where they were instead of where they're going to be, with his Pgh combo, those guys are honed into him and vice versa, i think if he had more than a week to generate some chemistry with the likes of Carter , Bergeron, et al, we'd see different results.

 

I do like the backhand theory though...

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@jammer2

 

 I'll eliminate the first two with...see Gretzky, Orr, Mario etc etc.

 

 The only Canadian forwards who have looked good IMO are Tavares, Toews, Getzlaf, Carter. The first three aren't exactly lighting it up either, but are playing well.

 

 Maybe it's just that everyone gets up for playing Canada? I don't know.

 

 

  Well, maybe that is it. Crosby is not in the class of Mario, Orr or Gretzky, and therefore can't just click naturally with anyone? With Sid, perhaps it takes a few weeks, where Mario and Orr were more natural virtuoso's and didn't need the extra time. Stats aside, I believe he's not on par with the 3 you mentioned, but maybe a talk for another day. 

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  We all know about Sid's power base in his legs and lower torso, it's this physical aspect that sets him apart from many other stars. Perhaps he is over utilizing this aspect of his game, which results in more contact, but also takes away from his ability to stickhandle and create the natural space that other stars take for granted?

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The title of this thread reminds me of the part in A Christmas Story when the waiters at the Chinese restaurant are singing (attempting to more like it) Christmas Carols, haha.

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How about this, he has dumbed down his game to raise the level of the less talented players he plays with in Pgh, when he's skating with other elite talent , they're faster , have vision similar to his, have better hands and skill than he is used to , as a result he puts the puck where they were instead of where they're going to be, with his Pgh combo, those guys are honed into him and vice versa, i think if he had more than a week to generate some chemistry with the likes of Carter , Bergeron, et al, we'd see different results.

 

I do like the backhand theory though...

 

  I can relate to this theory when talking about Kunitz (who looks more and more out of place with each passing day btw)....but not Neal or Malkin, they are legit.

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@jammer2

 

 Well he ISN'T in the class of Orr, Gretz or Mario...but he's certainly elite. It's hard to believe a guy that good is hard to play with...have you ever heard of that before?

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@jammer2

 

 Well he ISN'T in the class of Orr, Gretz or Mario...but he's certainly elite. It's hard to believe a guy that good is hard to play with...have you ever heard of that before?

 

 Nope, I have never seen it before that I recall. Elite players usually just click with anyone, I think that's why it's being talked about so much.

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The title of this thread reminds me of the part in A Christmas Story when the waiters at the Chinese restaurant are singing (attempting to more like it) Christmas Carols, haha.

 

i thought of chef from South Park "why sad , children ?"

 

 

@jammer2

 

Crosby and Malkin do okay together on the powerplay, 87 never really "clicked " with Neal though.

maybe there wasn't time allowed for that magic to happen or perhaps Sid likes his guys , his right wing is starting to resemble the Red Hot Chilli Peppers guitar roster though... lots of guys cycle through that position , no one really seems to stick.

 

i think there might also be something to the theory that he has a grinder's mentality coupled with amazing ability, he works hard, probably harder than someone with his talent level needs too, he goes to the greasy areas when he'd probably be as effective and more amazing in space.  

 

He works damn hard and that is the aspect of his game i admire,  i don't care for him and how he's jammed down our throats, but i cannot downplay his work ethic. 

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  Perhaps I'm on to something with this Sid initiating contact and physicality thing. Other elite players usually avoid contact, but it's engrained in Sid to play one way, physical. If you are initiating contact you don't get the natural space that most elite players create for themselves and use it to their advantage. It's much harder to see your linemates when you are up tight against someone....no?

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i thought of chef from South Park "why sad , children ?"

 

 

@jammer2

 

Crosby and Malkin do okay together on the powerplay, 87 never really "clicked " with Neal though.

maybe there wasn't time allowed for that magic to happen or perhaps Sid likes his guys , his right wing is starting to resemble the Red Hot Chilli Peppers guitar roster though... lots of guys cycle through that position , no one really seems to stick.

 

i think there might also be something to the theory that he has a grinder's mentality coupled with amazing ability, he works hard, probably harder than someone with his talent level needs too, he goes to the greasy areas when he'd probably be as effective and more amazing in space.  

 

He works damn hard and that is the aspect of his game i admire,  i don't care for him and how he's jammed down our throats, but i cannot downplay his work ethic. 

 

I don't watch South Park, but that quite made me laugh. Well done.

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Perhaps he's actually not elite, and when he gets away from the Bettman-controlled NHL refs, we see him for the pedestrian player he actually is. :ph34r:

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@AJgoal

 

 I know you're joking, but Crosby was elite before Bettman ever heard of him.

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Well he ISN'T in the class of Orr, Gretz or Mario...but he's certainly elite

Your post sent me on a short trip down memory lane, and I went looking for Gretzky's early stats. I was trying to test a rough theory that maybe, just maybe, Sid doesn't necessarily excel in this kind of tournament is because he's more of a playmaker than goal scorer. Ovechkin scores goals, and usually does well. Crosby sets up a lot of pretty goals, which requires chemistry with linemates, and thus a longer lead time is needed.

So I thought maybe the goal/assist ratio of a player might explain some of it. I see Thornton the same way. BUT, Crosby scores his fair share of goals, so I think I was going down a rabbit hole, and took it no further.

All that to say that I looked at Gretzky's stats in his last year of OHA just before making the leap to the WHA. He had 182 points in 64 games and was (not surprisingly) top scorer for his team.

Second leading scorer? Dan Lucas, 117 points in 61 games. Drafted by the Flyers. Played 6 career NHL games.

But, hey, he was second to Gretzky one time ;)

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First, I'm wondering if the "Crosby is difficult to play with" moniker is completely fair.  It appears true for this tournament, but 2010 he was a PPG player (7 games, 4G, 3A  +2). Not too shabby.

 

So, I'm going to feel free to base my guesses strictly on this tournament.

 

First, I think Crosby's game--aside from the contact thing mentioned above--is to find open spaces.  Both skating to them himself and also in his passing.  He has a tendency to make some assumptions when he passes and it's possible it takes time for his wingers to understand where he's assuming they are going to be.  (Conversely, maybe it takes time for HIM to understand where they're going to be).  So, he passes to an empty spot expecting someone to be on their way, but instead it truly is an empty spot.   It's possible, too, that he's going to a spot expecting a pass that just isn't coming.

 

But why is this so different than his PPG experience in Vancouver?   The only reason I can point to is the larger ice.  It's possible--I don't know why, but it's possible--that he's losing his wingers on the bigger ice surface.  Just saying that if his usual understanding of his surroundings is kind of like sonar that maybe this is thrown off by the larger surroundings.  

 

It's also possible that the contact thing mentioned above is thrown off a little by the larger ice surface.  It's possible he's a little like a power forward in basketball that feeds off of pushing off of his opponent or thrives on working in traffic.  Maybe the large ice surface diminishes that and throws his game off.

 

No idea.  Just throwing stuff against the wall to see what sticks.

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perhaps some our Pens poster can contribute ?  @nossagog  @B21 @Polaris922

 

hello.

Aside from this question which is fair and being handled pretty gently from mostly Flyers fans , i'd like to add Paul Martin looks really really good on the big ice surface in these Olympics, he's got good jump in his legs and has been much better in his own end than i remember seeing him in the NHL, I haven't really seen him since last year though ...

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@ruxpin

 

i reckon i expect more from the best player in the world in this type of showcase.

 

I don't remember him lighting it up in Vancouver, and aside from his GW in the gold medal game don't really remember his line seeming like that big a threat to score or even dictate play really. I thought Towes' line and Morrow Richards Nash were Canada's best lines on that team , I remember a lot of hype about the Sharks forwards being kept together and then they underwhelmed too. Crosby was tied for 7th in scoring so it's not like he sucked....

It is also true that Crosby is seeing the worlds best  forwards across from him also , so if he doesn't win the draw his guys are chasing the puck, tough to dictate the play when Datsyuk, Zetterberg  Selane and the like are dangling in your defensive zone. (talking 2010 here).

 

i was taken aback by the attempts to put him with multiple wingers in the opening game, Carter didn't seem to work then MSL didn't seem to work... Carter I can see since he's a shoot first type but a guy like MSL's game is translatable to any style and i thought it was odd for them to be relatively ineffective.

Then the next game he's paired with Benn and Bergeron ... just seems like a lot of tinkering for a guy one would think is pretty automatic.

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just seems like a lot of tinkering for a guy one would think is pretty automatic.

 

I agree. Full disclosure:  I didn't watch 10 seconds of the Vancouver games, so I was going solely on stats.  Yeah, I know; doing that can be really deceptive.

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@ruxpin

 

Crosby had 3 or 4 points against Norway in an 8-2 blowout in 2010. Against the US in 2 games, Russia and Slovakia (the real games) he had a goal. 

 

Again, he's not the only one who isn't elevating his game from the Canadian forwards. I just expect more than average from him in 2 Olympic tournaments. The Orrs, Gretzkys and Lemieuxs were the best players for Canada when they played internationally. Crosbys legacy (golden goal not withstanding) is more in line with the Corey Perrys and Mike Richards.

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Canadian players have a sense of entitlement and think they should just be handed things.

Except for the hard working NCAA players, of course.

:ph34r:

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I'll go back to some of Jammer's points....

 

I don't think it's #1.  If Kunitz and Dupuis can "keep up" then most, if not all, of the forwards on Team Canada can.

 

I don't think it's #2 either.  Just a hunch. 

 

Probably some truth to #3...especially since it is coming from a former teammate in Hossa.

 

I'll add one contributing factor that no one mentioned. Pressure. I think that there is probably more pressure on him than any other player on Team Canada.  Captain.  Best player in the world.  I know he had the Golden Goal in Vancouver but that was more a bad play by Miller than a good play by Sid.  He was PPG but it was an awfully quiet PPG.  I understand all he has done in the NHL as far as pressure situations but maybe this is a different kind of pressure. Just a thought.

 

I also agree with FC - with a few exceptions, Team Canada just isn't clicking like it should. Yet.  I would have kept him with Kunitz longer...I think Babcock needed to be more patient there even in a short tournament.

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Team Canada just isn't clicking like it should. Yet.  I would have kept him with Kunitz longer...I think Babcock needed to be more patient there even in a short tournament.

 

Agree on all these points.  

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@B21

 

 Pretty sure Crosby has felt pressure on him to win since he's been, what...ten? I get this is more pressure, but he usually thrives off that kind of stuff.

 

 I don't even think Kunitz should be on the team...he's easily been the worst player on TC over 3 games IMO.

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Team Canada just isn't clicking like it should. Yet. I would have kept him with Kunitz longer...I think Babcock needed to be more patient there even in a short tournament.

 

Absolutely agree with this (and pretty much with the rest of the post, too)

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      It's hard for Crosby to play with others because he is used to playing with himself
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      @ruxpin   Crosby had 3 or 4 points against Norway in an 8-2 blowout in 2010. Against the US in 2 games, Russia and Slovakia (the real games) he had a goal.    Again, he's not the only one who isn't elevating his game from the Canadian forwards. I just expect more than average from him in 2 Olympic tournaments. The Orrs, Gretzkys and Lemieuxs were the best players for Canada when they played internationally. Crosbys legacy (golden goal not withstanding) is more in line with the Corey Perrys and M
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      Agree on all these points.  
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      So what is the standard, if Crosby can't put up points he's struggling and hard to play with, but if Getzlaf, Teows and Taveres don't its ok because "they're making things happen"? I see Crosby making things happen too, the constant is that none of them are putting up points.  The competition in this tournament is pretty good, I don't expect players to go around dominating here.   I really think he's struggling in this environment.  Typically the Pens are playing a grinding dump and chase game,

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