Golf and Tennis has power rankings, and sometimes wish other sports did too. That is one of the great things about sports, is debating who is number one. Last night's game showed us who the best player in hockey really is.
Its painful to admit, but Sidney Crosby is now the best player in hockey. The way I see it with Ovechkin losing, no one is close right now. I'm sure I will get a lot of crap from Wings fans, but the facts are I don't like him because he is entitled and whiny, not because of his talent. You don't hate someone with a passion if they aren't very good.
What Crosby has done is very well publicized. He was the poster boy after the Lockout and became the youngest captain ever. He went to the Stanley Cup finals twice, winning last year over the Red Wings in 7 games. He also won the Gold Medal in the pressure packed Vancouver Olympics beating Goalie/Hockey God/MSU Spartan Ryan Miller. He is a good leader for his team and kept everyone together after Therrien got fired. Sure he whines and hes a diver, and that's unfortunate, because he really has a lot of talent. Maybe when he grows up it'll get better.
Lets look at some stats. Crosby vs Ovechkin head to head. Crosby 51 G, 58 A 109 Points. Ovechkin 50 G, 59 A 109 Points. Pretty even, but Crosby played 9 more games. Ovechkin had 70 more shots on goal. Crosby tied for the Rocket Richard trophy. Both are up for the Hart.
But Crosby has Evgeni Malkin, of course hes gonna score more? Not so fast! Niklas Backstrom was 4th in the NHL in points, Alexander Semin was 13th, Mike Green was 21st. Crosby's teammates? Malkin, 19th, nobody else in the Top 50. Ovechkin has a far better supporting cast.
In the Playoffs you ask? Head to head, Crosby is 1-0, has a Cup and has been to one more. In the Olympics, Canada destroyed a talent heavy Russian squad. This year, in 6 games Crosby leads the way with 14 points (5 G, 9 A) with Ovechkin with 7 games is in 5th with 10 points (5 G, 5 A). Pittsburgh played the Fifth seed Ottawa, 15th best Defense in the NHL this year. Montreal was 25th overall and played musical goalies in the series before settling with Halak, who they should have started all along. In the last two games? Ovechkin had 1 assist. The best player in the league has 1 point? That's ridiculous.
Ovechkin is more fun and hits, but no way is he better than Crosby. This may be a Marino vs Montana argument. Marino is probably the better player, but Montana made everyone around him far better and won far more big games and therefore is the better overall player. Ovechkin has a summer to think about this and try and finally win a Cup.