Hockey Headlines: The Real Crosby Bias

Who’s Crying Now?

I know where the narrative comes from, the one that labels Sidney Crosby as a “crybaby”. When he was a rookie, he did whine on occasion (although I’d say he’s grown out of that). He does complain to the referees (but please find me an NHL captain who doesn’t). And fans of other teams don’t like him because he gets too much attention. (Or because he’s an amazing player and not on their team). [The Hockey News], [Sportsnet]

I understand where it comes from. I just don’t see a lot of basis for it anymore. The San Jose Sharks find themselves in a 0-2 hole. They’re going home, which should be their source of comfort, but I’d imagine there’s a measure of frustration in that dressing room. Rather than solely looking at themselves in the mirror, they took the predictable approach of finding some way to claim bias in favor of the Penguins. It came in the form of cheating accusations against Crosby. [Mercury News], [TSN]

Consider the source. Logan Couture is one of the biggest whiners I have ever seen. He complains to the media more often than most, not to mention he had a spectacular dive last night to help get his team a powerplay. How many times in these playoffs have you heard the Penguins or Crosby specifically complain to the media about officiating or something of the sort? After Bryan Rust was hurt in game one, Crosby responded by saying the league made the right call not to suspend Patrick Marleau, and he’s not the kind of player to do something dirty. Wow what a baby.

Did you know there were a grand total of three penalty calls in game two? The Sharks got one, and the Penguins got two. Oh no the refs are biased! Well actually, one of the Sharks penalties was a delay of game, something that isn’t debatable nor up for interpretation. So essentially each team got one infraction penalty. Equal calls? Yes that’s clearly favoring the Penguins. As for the faceoff nonsense, well I think trying to get your timing down is exactly what you’re supposed to do. But perhaps things will even out in San Jose, Logan.

Logan Couture Sharks
(Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE)

The absurdity of this “league bias” toward Crosby and the Pens is just annoying. We’re talking about a team that has overcome countless injuries all season long, including being without their second-best defenceman in the Stanley Cup Final. They overcame a dreadful start, had a complete transformation with their coaching change, and has seen a group of cast-offs become stars. Crosby’s leadership skills have been thrown under the bus, yet he has stepped it up in a huge way. [Deadspin]

Perhaps we need to stop claiming conspiracy and give this team a little credit. We have trouble celebrating great players, or giving them respect, maybe because we’re a negative society by nature. But don’t let this playoff season go by without enjoying the work of a generational talent. You’d be doing yourself a dis-service. At the end of the day, the only bias I see is hatred for a player based on not much at all, other than the fact that he isn’t a member of your favorite team. Get over it.

In Other News…

Evgeni Malkin is in the thick of a playoff race, and is also a brand new father. [Sporting News]

Where will the Canadiens go on draft day? [Todays Slapshot]

P.K Subban was planning to play a basketball game with Snoop Dogg. [Montreal Gazette]

Ken Hitchcock is giving it one more kick at the can. [Edmonton Sun], [CBC]

The owner of the Hurricanes is being sued. By his sons. [News Observer]

Are the Flames going to hire Randy Carlyle? [The Score]

And finally, it appears as though expansion to Las Vegas is happening. [The Fourth Period]