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Crosby is the Problem!


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A couple of members stated in another thread earlier that Crosby is the problem. Their posts deserve a new thread.  Prior to reading Starkley's article I thought the biggest problem was the lack of scoring talent on the 3rd and 4th lines, but wow I have to agree the biggest problem with the Penguins is Crosby.

 

 

 


I think the problem is Crosby, I said it in another thread, I think since he's won a title a person can't come into that team and be any kind of effective leader because 87 has won the strap, he knows what it takes. I also think it is why a lot of the stronger locker room guys don't stick around after the rental period.
 

 

 

 


The Pens biggest problem in the playoffs is #87.  He simply does not have the leadership skills nor the personal constitution to lead a team to the promised land or through playoff adversity.  Talk to me about 2008 and 2009 all you want to, but he was a young poster captain who had vocal vets in the room that kicked ass in the locker room and led by example on the ice.  They kept those teams grounded and focused on the task.   The Pens' captain lacks all of that.  The chips get down and he sulks and wags his sorry head and chirps to himself, the refs, his coach, probably the groundskeeper.
 
He disappeared in this playoffs and that is not a new phenomenon.   The playoffs hit and he becomes Ovechkin.  Sure, he goes to all three zones, unlike Ovechkin, but he is largely ineffective in all three.  He clearly cannot rally his troops a la Jonathan Toews or Kopitar or Brad Richards or others.  He becomes a very expensive hood ornament rather than an engine.  He's one of the best if not the best in the regular season but he is along for the ride in the playoffs and comes up small and whiny and petulant and his team follows suit.   In a seven game series, skill is important, but it often comes down to will and desire and a couple generals leading the charge.   You lack the will and the constitution, you get yourself knocked out 5 years in a row by lower seeded teams. You fix Crosby, you fix the Penguins.   If you can't fix him, Pittsburgh becomes Northwest Washington DC.
 
I don't care who the coach is.

 

 

 

 

By Joe Starkey 
 
Don't let that little front-office earthquake distract you from the primary reason the Penguins are not participating in the Eastern Conference final.
 
The primary reason is Sidney Crosby, whose leadership never has been more in question.
 
If you didn't know better, you'd be looking for blood on Crosby's hands in the wake of Ray Shero's beheading and the pending demise of Dan Bylsma. You'd think he tried to orchestrate the palace coup.
 
Set aside, for a moment, Crosby's paltry playoff numbers. This is bigger than that. It's about the way he comported himself.
 
It's about the mysteriously early exits from power plays, the drifting to the bench in the middle of shifts, the uncharacteristic snapping at the coach and the perpetually blank look on his face.
 
If we find out he was badly injured, different story. But there is no evidence of that. The evidence suggests Crosby was unhappy and wanted the world to know it.
 
There are some who can't help but make excuses for Crosby. Sid's Sycophants. They have pitted him against Evgeni Malkin since the latter arrived, always favoring Sid.
 
You know what you'll get every night from Sid, they'd say. But Geno? Geno's too unpredictable. Geno at his worst evokes the shadowy side of Jaromir Jagr.
 
Yeah, that's it: Sid is Mario; Geno is Jagr.
 
Well, who looked like the moody, easily frustrated, coach-killer version of Jagr in these playoffs? And who looked more like Lemieux, laying it on the line in Game 7 and putting up a conference-leading point total through two series?
 
Imagine if Crosby were leading the conference in scoring and Malkin had one goal in his past 18 playoff games. Do you think the Sycophants would be finding excuses for Malkin?
 
More likely they'd be hanging him in effigy in Market Square.
 
One thing we never heard from Crosby during these playoffs was an unprompted, unqualified statement of personal responsibility.
 
A leader's first commandment is to personally and publicly accept blame even when he is not at fault but especially when he is. It tends to play well in locker rooms.
 
But in the midst of his hideous playoff, Crosby never said anything like this: “Put it on me. I'm the captain. I'm not getting it done.”
 
Instead, the best he could muster after his wretched Game 2 against Columbus was, “We've got to be better.”
 
We?
 
The weak-wingers complaint needs to die, too. The Penguins offered Marian Hossa $50 million and a guaranteed spot next to Crosby for the prime of his career. Hossa couldn't get out of town fast enough. They brought in Jarome Iginla. Crosby preferred Pascal Dupuis.
 
The line of Crosby, Dupuis and Chris Kunitz was highly productive. Crosby enjoyed playing with them. So the Penguins shelled out $26.5 million to keep both.
 
Yeah, poor Sid.
 
In these playoffs, Bylsma often had Kunitz and Malkin on the top line. That's not a bad set of wingers. True, Brian Gibbons played there, too, and while he's far from an ideal choice, it's worth noting that he had twice as many goals in 54 seconds as Crosby has in his past 18 playoff games.
 
Crosby had one power-play shot in the entire Rangers series (a weak perimeter wrister in Game 6). How is that possible? He has one third-period goal in his past 41 playoff games (the one that made it 6-2 in a blowout of Ottawa last season).
 
Feel free to hide your eyes before we look at how Crosby has fared in his past four season-ending games” Montreal Game 7 in 2010, Philly Game 6 in '12, Boston Game 4 in '13 and Rangers Game 7.
 
In those four games, the Penguins' best player totaled zero goals, zero assists and a minus-6 (still checking on his Corsi rating).
 
read the entire article at:
 
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Interesting article by Starkey.

This one was a slow awakening for me, but I've completely gone over to the dark side on Crosby to the place I really do wonder if they'd be better without him.

I mean, if they did decide to move him the line would form early and be 29 deep and whomever the Pittsburgh GM was that pulled the trigger would be stoned to death, but I wonder if it isn't the answer

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I hope they keep both.

 

 But I honestly believe now that they aren't the darlings of the NHL, they need to move one or the other to get some depth on that roster. They've gone out in a rather embarrassing fashion 5 times in a row now. I can't see them trading Crosby because he basically saved that franchise (ok him and Uncle Gary). And that would make Malkinstein the face of the franchise...YIKES! (lol) But somethings gotta give there.

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Cue the designated Crosby apologists, 3...2...1.....Seriously though, how many people on this forum alone have called out Crosby for the very things that Starkey did only to be poo poo-d away as sheer penguin hate( although some of it stems from that). Just how many different poster names does Polaris922/B21/nossagog have that he is able to post so many negative comments on the article? Does he get them at traffic stops in order for a lesser ticket or something.....Note, I realize that the above poster(s) are different people and this is just a satirical remark to get them to chime in. :)

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Crosbys a great player obviously. But I'd rather play with guys like Toews, Getzlaf, Giroux on my team. Not that I think they're better, I'd just rather be on a team with those type of guys.They just seem like guys you'd rather go to war with, then for a beer after. I've told guys on my team to just shut up and play...not sure how that would go over with Sidney.My guess is a tantrum followed by an assault on my genitals.

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but I've completely gone over to the dark side on Crosby to the place I really do wonder if they'd be better without him.

 

The dark side you say? Crosby can overthrow Bettman and rule the NHL. Rux, the two of you can. Did Holmgren ever tell you what happened to your real father? Crosby is your FATHER!!!!!  (just messing around)

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Crosbys a great player obviously. But I'd rather play with guys like Toews, Getzlaf, Giroux on my team. Not that I think they're better, I'd just rather be on a team with those type of guys.They just seem like guys you'd rather go to war with, then for a beer after. I've told guys on my team to just shut up and play...not sure how that would go over with Sidney.My guess is a tantrum followed by an assault on my genitals.

 

A thousand times ^THIS^

 

Everybody laughed when I said I'd rather lose with Mike Richards than win with Sidney Crosby. I meant it then and I stand by it. As much as I'd love to celebrate a Stanley Cup win for the Flyers I wouldn't want Crosby to be any part of it. True I said the same about Jaromir Jagr and I was proven wrong, but let's face it I had no way of knowing Jagr had changed so much for the better. #87 could probably learn a lot from Jagr.

 

Calling Crosby "the problem" as if most of the Pens' PO flops are his fault is a little silly imo. I don't mean to dismiss his failures either - and they're huge. He's come up empty too many times now for it to be a fluke, or snakebit or whatever. But MAF was a big reason the Pens went out in an embarrassing fashion - what twice now? 3 times? And Blysma didn't exactly do Sid any favors by taking his time moving up Sutter on to his line. I'm sure there were many other changes Pens' fans wanted to see (re: line combos, jumpstarting Crosby) that Blysma never considered.

 

He needs to grow up more that's all. Is that so terrible? And he needs some help carrying the load of NHL ROYALTY Poster Boy, which Gary's PR machine put on him his rookie year. Now the media fks are turning on him...how he handles this challenge will determine a lot about his future captaincy, his career in general.

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A thousand times ^THIS^

 

Everybody laughed when I said I'd rather lose with Mike Richards than win with Sidney Crosby. I meant it then and I stand by it. As much as I'd love to celebrate a Stanley Cup win for the Flyers I wouldn't want Crosby to be any part of it. True I said the same about Jaromir Jagr and I was proven wrong, but let's face it I had no way of knowing Jagr had changed so much for the better. #87 could probably learn a lot from Jagr.  Agree wholeheartedly.

 

Calling Crosby "the problem" as if most of the Pens' PO flops are his fault is a little silly imo. I don't mean to dismiss his failures either - and they're huge. He's come up empty too many times now for it to be a fluke, or snakebit or whatever. But MAF was a big reason the Pens went out in an embarrassing fashion - what twice now? 3 times? And Blysma didn't exactly do Sid any favors by taking his time moving up Sutter on to his line. I'm sure there were many other changes Pens' fans wanted to see (re: line combos, jumpstarting Crosby) that Blysma never considered.  I was/am calling Crosby the problem, but I have to agree with much of this.  "A" problem, but there's enough problems that you really can't say "the."  The funny part is we're (I'm) talking about many problems and we're discussing a team that does extremely well in the regular season, goes to the playoffs every year for the past 8 or so and went to the ECF just last year and the second round this year.   Probably not horrible problems to have.

 

He needs to grow up more that's all. Yes.

Is that so terrible? --Absolutely not.  Not in and of itself, anyway.  I think we agree that is likely a common characteristic for a 26 year old.  And he needs some help carrying the load of NHL ROYALTY Poster Boy, which Gary's PR machine put on him his rookie year. Now the media fks are turning on him...how he handles this challenge will determine a lot about his future captaincy, his career in general.  My concern with Crosby at this point is kind of what my concern became with Richards, although it's admittedly not apples to apples.   The thing is that Crosby was made captain very very early.  He had great success early, clearly, but I maintain some of that was because of the veteran compliments he had on those teams.  But now, at 26, he is fully "the guy" on the team,  the vets are gone, and he really can say with a straight face "two finals, a Cup, two golds, and a gold-clinching goal, so STFU" to any veterans they would now bring in to the locker room to help ala Roberts or Guerin.     The vets that were here when Richards arrived (or just after) were one thing, but Richards never quite meshed with the vets brought in afterward to help out.  He seemed to respond with "I'm the captain, this is MY team."

 

I'm not a Pens fan nor do I follow the team on an intimate level, but it *seems* that a similar circumstance may have/may be developing there.  That you bring in an Iginla, etc., but they never quite mesh because there is some defensive mechanism from a 25/26 year old who has talent but somehow reacts with a "this is MY team.  Shut up and get onboard" rather than accepting advice or help.

 

Does that make any sense?

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That was an interesting bit about Hossa. Why did he refuse that contract, anyway? He would have been the perfect guy to have with Sid.

 

Wasn't the "official" story that he simply jumped because he thought the Wings had a better chance to win?   Maybe there was something slightly less idiotic to it.  I don't know, I still think he was chasing what the thought was the greener grass.    Chased it all the way to Chicago.

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I don't know, I still think he was chasing what the thought was the greener grass.    Chased it all the way to Chicago.

 

He clearly found it. Sheesh, 3 straight SCF appearances (4 total), and 2 Stanley Cups, going for a 3rd.

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This one was a slow awakening for me, but I've completely gone over to the dark side on Crosby to the place I really do wonder if they'd be better without him.

 

My thoughts 2 years back was that Crosby should be moved (a- because of his marketability and b- because of his knoggin). Turns out I was right on point b. They should have done it then. 

 

I am sure there is a Regis / Bettemen understory here, but not dirty enough to go dig it up. 

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I'll bite. Lots to digest here so here goes.

 

I'll let the other Pens fans here speak for themselves but this Crosby "apologist" put him as the #2 reason behind Bylsma for the Pens disappointing showing this year.  I was also scathing in my criticism of him after the most recent Pens/Flyers playoff series. I think that makes my assessments of Crosby fair and, frankly, unbiased.

 

It's easy - very easy - to just look at the last 5 years and say the Pens have been disappointing and Crosby is the captain so he must be the problem (or one of the bigger problems). By my count the Pens have had two embarrassing playoff outcomes since the Cup year and a goalie who has melted down on more than one occasion.

 

There was nothing embarrassing about losing to the Canadiens in the 2nd round after back-to-back Cup finals appearances. If not being the first team to make 3 straight Cup finals since the 83-85 Oilers is "embarrassing" - where do I sign? Crosby had 19 points in 13 games.

 

The following season was the series in which they blew a 3-1 lead in the 1st round to the lightning. No Crosby. No Malkin.

 

Next season. The Flyers debacle. Embarassing Playoff #1. Enough said...and the Pens fans here were very critical of Crosby as I recall (myself included).

 

Up next was the loss to the Bruins in the ECF.  The 4-0 sweep was embarrassing.   Still, it was the ECF.  The Pens scored 2 goals the entire series. That's not Crosby's fault.  I recall everyone being highly critical of Bylsma for failing to adjust to the Bruins.  Up until the Bruins series Crosby was having a very good post season. That was the case for a lot of the Pens as it was the case that few played well against Boston.

 

Then of course this year - embarrassing going out in the 2nd and going out to the Rangers which I put on Bylsma first and Crosby 2nd.

 

I think I see a lot of over-analyzing and fishing for that red herring because...well....no one likes Crosby ("I respect his talents but...") and he's an easy target. But he's not a long term "problem" and he does not need replaced/traded because of one bad post season (+1 series against Boston).

 

Perfect example. Rentals like Hossa and Iginla opted to leave after their experiences with the Pens? Must be Crosby. Of course, Hossa left the Wings after a year, too.  If Iginla leaves Boston this offseason will it be because he didn't like Lucic or Marchand or Bergeron or because he felt he had a better chance (or could get more money) elsewhere? But leaving the Pens? Crosby's fault.  Eveyone seems to forget that the two most "no nonsense" rentals acquired by the Pens (Bill Guerin and Gary Roberts) opted to stay.

 

During the postseason most of the criticisms of Crosby were focused strictly on the scoring sheet. Even his biggest critics (i.e. - MIlbury and Flyers fans) acknowledged he was playing hard and not taking shifts off. Now because of an article written by a Pittsburgh columnist along with the whispers in forums and blogosphere, its bad body language, poor posture and facial expressions.  OMG - he yelled back at his coach!  The same coach 99% of the hockey world should be fired.

 

Crosby is not a problem, He's not the problem.  He is and should be part of the long term future.

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I'll just address all of you in one post here so as not to confuse myself to the point of alcoholism. I agree the 26 year old Crosby could use a mentor. Iginla wasn't it. He came here and failed to produce whether with Sid or anyone else. Sid didn't refuse to play with Iginla. Bylsma refused to play Iginla with Sid because he wasn't fast enough to be part of the play. I'd call for it time and time again, but admittedly when it happened, Iginla was far behind the action on a lot of occasions and just didn't have the wheels to stay up. For whatever reason Iginla didn't produce here, and for the money Boston paid him, he wouldn't work here.

Sid has a very mixed resume right now. He came into the league on fire, and really took the reigns of the wagon here. He competed for a Cup, then won a Cup, and all the while absorbing non-stop abuse league wide for his youthful antics running his mouth. I was happily willing to forgive him the youthful mistakes as he matured into a captain that led his team to a championship. His skill level was head and shoulders above all comers, and his leadership was beyond reproach... for awhile...

I've sat here thinking about a lot of the comments made recently. I haven't commented much about it because I wanted to read up a little on the history of things and put it all together in my little pea brain. A review of the playoff series events after the Cup win, Crosby's concussion issues and soft tissue damage to his neck, and overall team success/failures helps but isn't decisive.

The Penguins lost in the conference semifinals to the Canadiens the following year after a see-saw 7 game series. Fleury wasn't very good (.892 save %) losing two one goal games leading up to the game 7, which the Habs won handily 5-2. In researching this series and trying to see what had changed from the season before, I came across this quote from an article prior to game 7...

"The key to the Penguins winning is altering their game plan to counteract the style that Montreal is playing. Penguins assistant coach Tony Granato was quoted (paraphrased here) during Game Six on the CBC Hockey Night in Canada broadcast as saying that the Penguins do not need to worry about how the Canadiens are playing and must stick to their own game plan. I am not an NHL coach or former player by any means, and with all due respect to Tony Granato, if the Penguins do not make adjustments based on the Canadiens game plan they can say hello to the golf course earlier this season."

Guess what? The Penguins lost. They never adjusted their game plan to the Habs and they lost. That was the start of the road we're discussing here... what's wrong. In fairness, the Habs had limited Crosby, Malkin, and Staal to three goals in six games total. Is that one player? Or a system refusing to adapt? Was it leadership? Bill Guerin was there and Crosby thought the world of him. Was it maturity? I don't think so, because Guerin was a good enough leadership influence on Crosby to win it all the year before, and that didn't change. My opinion? The refusal to change the game plan. No effort to adjust. Coaching was the problem.

Here is where Crosby gets his concussion, and then misdiagnosed concussion that was realy soft tissue damage in his neck. Was this a turning point in Crosby's approach?? Let's see...

So let's go through all of the following season's issues. The Pens played the LIghtning the next season in the first round. They were up 3 games to 1 and eventually lost in 7. Why? Crosby and Malkin were out due to injury. Fleury was eaten alive games 5 and 6. Then lost a 1-0 bid in game 7. The Pens couldn't score. By all accounts, Fleury stood on his head, Roloson just stood better. The Pens dominated the game in every way but the scoreboard, and Roloson walked out with 36 saves. The story? Not enough offense without Sid and Geno in the lineup. The Lightning had their stars and the Pens did not. Was the problem coaching? I don't think so. I think it was sheer talent differential. Injury was the problem.

So move on to the next season... Your Flyers came to town. Crosby scored goals in three games, and points in five. Despite the antics, despite "the shift" as you like to call it, despite Malklin all but being asleep as usual for his first round. Unlike Malkin his points weren't all in the 10-3 route in game 4, though one of his goals was. Crosby had a very good series against your Flyers despite what winning the series might have convinced you. He had 8 points spread out in the series. His -3 stat is more a reflection of Fleury letting in shots from center ice than anything he did. Was he angry? Yes.. but I remember quite a few seasons of an "angry" Crosby scoring point after point against the Flyers. Did he fail his team? Or was that season more on Fleury? If memory serves, despite Bryzgalov's rough series, the general consensus was Fleury blew it badly. Game in and game out. Fleury giving up 4 or more goals (4/8/8/5) in the four games Philly won are pretty telling. And these weren't hard work, defensive breakdown kinds of goals all along. A lot of this was pure garbage goaltending. Goaltending was the problem. Crosby was not his usual focused playoff self, but he was not the problem. Was Crosby different here than he'd been previously? He never acted up in losing to the Wings in 2008, but that series was close enough game in game out that he had to be focused because they could still win... was his temper and emotion a bad thing? Was he really OFF his game with 3 goals and 5 assists in 6 games vs. Giroux? No. Not at all.

Now we move on to the ECF last season with Boston. The Penguins came out and Boston outperformed them in every single category known to man. Bylsma repeatedly said throughout the series that the Pens didn't need to adjust to the Bruins, they just needed to play their system and it would take care of itself. Boston showed a suffocating defensive system. They stormed us in game 2 with 6 goals, many on an overwhelming forecheck. Malkin actually FOUGHT Bergeron when the game was still 1-0 Bruins. To me, that tells me a few things. Frustration was already set in. For the entire team. Was it Crosby? Or was it Bylsma? Was it the entire squad? Letang had the worst playoff series of his life. Who is to blame when an entire team collapses? The captain? the coach? the system? each and every one of them? Iginla? Morrow? Vokoun?? Game 1 was totally out of control. The officiating was horrendous, and you hadn't seen obstruction, after whistle scrums, and general nastiness like that since the Flyers won a Cup (like what I did there? :P ). Game 2 the Pens imploded. They let the lack of officiating and the Bruins clutch-grab system get them off the game of hockey, and that was a lost cause. They stunk. Games 3 and 4 were 1 goal losses. The Bruins outworked the Pens, winning in double overtime and then a 1-0 game 4. The Penguins coaches FINALLY admitted that they adjusted their approach to address the Bruins' ways... but by then it was too late.

So who is to blame for losing to the Bruins? Crosby? Byslma? Both? All of them... flat out all of them. In the day of million dollar ballerinas on skates they're ALL responsible.

This year they had the Rangers 3-1.. and we all saw the debacle that turned into. I call it a sense of entitlement. It's definitely a maturity issue. Without a doubt in my mind. Who is responsible for that? Crosby? Malkin? Bylsma? Lemieux?

I sum it all up with a simple statement. Sidney Crosby is paid a LOT of money to perform. Evgeni Malkin is paid a LOT of money to perform. The entire roster, from top to bottom, is paid a LOT of money to perform. Dan Bylsma is paid a LOT of money to harness these men and drive them towards the goal of winning hockey games. He is paid to adjust the system to the adversity they're facing and find a way to overcome the obstacle. Crosby is 26. Malkin is 27. They've known nothing BUT hockey their entire lives. They shouldn't need their hands held. Bylsma shouldn't need told the system is failing and you need to adjust. Yet against the Rangers, nothing was adjusted. And then Lundqvist stole game 7.

So what is the solution? Is Sidney Crosby really to blame for 8 lost games of playoff hockey? Single handedly? I thought this was a team sport? No man wins the Cup alone.

Is Bylsma the one responsible? Could he have done things differently? Can he get on the ice and force players to try harder? Can he hold men who make $9 million more accountable and get their attention?

How do you fix this? WHat is the answer? The owners have taken a military/police method of solving the problem. Ultimately the GM is responsible for those beneath him. Ray Shero paid the price for the team's failure. Will Bylsma pay as well? Will Crosby or Malkin be traded? (hell no!) Do individuals pay the price or is it an enviroment change that's needed?

For me, it's about the atmosphere. There are no surefire answers. Maybe this is the exact thing a relatively young team with two young stars needs to have happen to teach them the value of the Cup. Maybe the first one came early and seemingly easy to them, and they need a wake up call. Maybe they could write off the loss to Boston and something else, and they needed this dose of reality to bring them the maturity they need. They had to lose a Cup to Detroit before learning how to win one. Maybe... just maybe.. they change nothing else and go on to win 3 or 4 Cups over the next 5 to 10 years?

We all sit here and critique. But the simple fact is the only ones that know what efforts were put forward, are the men wearing the sweaters. The only ones that know what the coach did or did not do, are those same men and the coaches.

So without panicking and jumping to point the finger like a school kid, I'll wait and see what they do, and what they make of it. I have no answers, only hope.

Edited by Polaris922
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@Polaris922

 

You and I talked at the beginning of the playoffs, or at some point during the Jackets series (I think it was you) that we were suspicious about concussion with Crosby.  He claims to be well, but do you wonder if this is really the case?

 

It's not that I want him to be hurt, but it seems like it's almost a better explanation than bad attitude or whatever, doesn't it?  

 

Nice post, by the way.

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@Polaris922

 

You and I talked at the beginning of the playoffs, or at some point during the Jackets series (I think it was you) that we were suspicious about concussion with Crosby.  He claims to be well, but do you wonder if this is really the case?

 

It's not that I want him to be hurt, but it seems like it's almost a better explanation than bad attitude or whatever, doesn't it?  

 

Nice post, by the way.

 

I would be shocked....SHOCKED...if the poor play was the result of a concussion-related issue based solely on the fact that he was treated wit kid gloves during the last go-round with concussions.  Even after he was medical cleared he continued to wait until he felt right....with the Pens' blessing.   

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@ruxpin

 

I don't know.  I mean, I really focused on the man at the games I went to to see what was happening away from the puck.  And let me tell you, there was no lack of effort there.  He looked off in some ways... as I said before, he seemed to have the puck wander off his stick more than I remember, and seemed to be missing the net a lot those rare times when he would actually shoot.  Now I've never played a schedule like the pro players do, and certainly never at a competition level even close to what they do on a day in day out basis....  but I have wondered about fatigue.  Crosby just had his first FULL healthy season in a few years.  He played 80 regular season games, plus 6 Olympic games, plus 6 pre-season games, and then 6 playoff games against the Jackets...   98 games under his belt before the series against the Rangers started.  The guy was always in amazing condition.  But I wonder if somewhere along the line it just took its toll on him.  More games than Toews, Kane, and many similar players who are still skating...  I don't know.  

 

And thanks for the remark about the post.  I was dead tired but tried to get my thoughts together.   LOL 

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I would be shocked....SHOCKED...if the poor play was the result of a concussion-related issue based solely on the fact that he was treated wit kid gloves during the last go-round with concussions.  Even after he was medical cleared he continued to wait until he felt right....with the Pens' blessing.   

 

I can't help but agree with you.  I know I'm a Flyers fan and all that rot and I'm supposed to hate Crosby.  Obviously, I don't "like" him because he's on the "enemy team," but I don't hate him like I do, say, Nash ("good player, but...") or Downie. ;)      But I didn't like some things I've seen from him particularly in this playoffs.  Also last year in the Isles and Bruins series.  I'm kind of grasping for things to explain what I saw that don't involve "he's a problem."   You and @Polaris922 both wrote fairly good posts diminishing the "a problem" thing, but if he were a Flyer and I saw those things I'd be a bit concerned.  Of course, us Flyers fans have a penchant for being concerned because a player has a bad shift, so take that for what it's worth.

 

Maybe it is simply the team that's been put together around him or the coaching and he's frustrated and that's the beginning and end of it.  I'd said to @Vanflyer when he was talking about trading either Crosby or Malkin that I'd prefer to see a coaching change before shipping star players out.  I don't think with a 26 year old with his resume that waiting another season or two is going to diminish his value at all so there's no harm in testing that course first.  I guess at this point, I'm just suspicious but looking for creative alternatives when maybe the simple that you guys are saying is more likely.

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but I have wondered about fatigue. Crosby just had his first FULL healthy season in a few years. He played 80 regular season games, plus 6 Olympic games, plus 6 pre-season games, and then 6 playoff games against the Jackets... 98 games under his belt before the series against the Rangers started. The guy was always in amazing condition. But I wonder if somewhere along the line it just took its toll on him.

 

That's probably a pretty fair point.  Even if Towes, for example, did play as many games (Towes I think probably played more) I think it's highly arguable that Crosby's previous health issues would exacerbate the fatigue.  

 

Possibly a very good call, polaris.

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That's probably a pretty fair point. Even if Towes, for example, did play as many games (Towes I think probably played more) I think it's highly arguable that Crosby's previous health issues would exacerbate the fatigue.

Possibly a very good call, polaris.

Crosby played more regular season games by 4. They played the same Olympic and preseason games. And Sid only had one more playoff game till today. Now they're even. I just don't know that after three years of shorter seasons for Sid that would be a factor? Can you train for season length??

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