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Sidney Crosby is NOT Soft

Although the Penguins weren't victorious, their faith in their captain should be more validated Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Although the Penguins weren't victorious, their faith in their captain should be more validated
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Penguins fell at home at the hands of the New York Rangers last night 2-1.  The Rangers took a two goal lead into the 3rd period and held off the Penguins offensive assault that inevitably came to take a 2-1 series lead over Pittsburgh.  The Penguins desperation-mode came too late as they couldn't rally back even though they had 13 shots in the third compared to just 11 in the first two periods.  "Our desperation level was much higher in the third, and you saw the difference in our game and our play" said Crosby after the game.  He was unhappy with the team's effort in the first two periods.

Sidney Crosby is the most polarizing player in the NHL today.  A lot of it I believe stems from jealousy of the Penguins good fortune to draft him as well as Evgeni Malkin and having over a decade of success since then, but another great portion of it stems from this bizarre, misconceived notion that the Penguins Captain is soft.  Perhaps it stems from him taking a dirty hit in the Winter Classic and not playing through Post-Concussion Syndrome.  Which would be a pretty dumb argument.  Perhaps it's that he doesn't hit like a David Backes does, or cross-checks people when he's down one goal in the final 3 minutes of a playoff game like David Backes does.  The idea that he is weak, cowardly and unwilling to do whatever it takes for the Penguins to win games is completely and utterly false.  Crosby is in reality the complete opposite of what people say.  

I am by no means a Penguins fan and actually don't like Crosby myself.  I don't like his cheap, little slashes after the whistle or his constant chats with the referees, but those things are not because the man is soft.  He is irritating to play against for sure, but he is in my opinion one of the best leaders and captains in the NHL.  There is a reason why the Pittsburgh Penguins are always so willing to go to this guy's defense if anyone on the opposing team tries to get under his skin.  It is because they believe in this guy and they will go to war for him game in and game out.  

In the final two minutes of that game last night, I saw a captain that was leading by example, fighting for pucks in the corner and crashing the net with reckless abandon and doing anything to get the puck in the net.  Henrik Lundqvist stood tall and didn't allow the Pens to score, but Sidney Crosby fought valiently to the end.  You can dislike Crosby, but if you dislike him because you think he is soft, then you are lying to yourself.  He is still one of the best players in the NHL, criticize him all you like, boo him all you like, but don't call him soft.

Follow me on Twitter: @JHansgen57 for Hockey News, Analysis, Opinions and Updates

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