Skip to main content
NHL Insider

Crosby's top 30 moments

On 30th birthday, celebrating Penguins center's career highlights

by Dan Rosen / NHL.com Senior Writer

Sidney Crosby will celebrate his 30th birthday Monday by participating in two parades and bringing the Stanley Cup along for the ride. 

In the morning, Crosby will be the grand marshal in the 122nd Natal Day Parade in Halifax, Nova Scotia, a 20-minute drive from his hometown of Cole Harbour. The Natal Day Parade celebrates the birth of Halifax and the region. 

Crosby and the Cup will then travel to Rimouski, Quebec, where he played junior hockey, to participate in a parade in his honor in the afternoon. 

Video: The best of Sidney Crosby as he turns 30!

 

[RELATED: 30 things to know about Crosby | Crosby brings Stanley Cup home for third time]

 

These events are just the latest to be added to a long list of big moments leading to fantastic memories for Crosby, and the Pittsburgh Penguins, since his 18th birthday, eight days after the Penguins selected him at No. 1 in the 2005 NHL Draft.

In honor of his 30th birthday, here are the top 30 moments in Crosby's illustrious career:

 

1. Golden goal vs. United States

Crosby's most famous goal came in the gold-medal game of the Vancouver Olympics on Feb. 28, 2010. He scored 7:40 into overtime off a pass from Jarome Iginla to give Canada a 3-2 win against the United States.

 

2. First Stanley Cup championship

Crosby was injured on a check from Johan Franzen in the second period of Game 7 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Final against the Detroit Red Wings on June 12, 2009. He skated one more shift, but it didn't stop him from skating onto the ice to join his teammates and receive the Stanley Cup from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman for the first time following a 2-1 Penguins win.

 

3. Second Stanley Cup championship

Crosby was on top again on June 12, 2016, exactly seven years after he won the Stanley Cup for the first time. After overcoming concussion problems years earlier that nearly derailed his career, followed by a coaching change, a brutal start to the 2015-16 season and another coaching change, Crosby completed a remarkable run by winning his second Stanley Cup championship with the Penguins' 3-1 win against the San Jose Sharks in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final. He finished the postseason with 19 points (six goals, 13 assists) and won his first Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Video: PIT@SJS: Crosby, Pens celebrate fourth Stanley Cup

 

4. Repeat feat

The Penguins became the first team since the 1997-98 Red Wings to repeat as Stanley Cup champions when they defeated the Nashville Predators 2-0 on the road in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final on June 11, 2017. Crosby won the Conn Smythe Trophy again, finishing the playoffs with 27 points (eight goals, 19 assists).

 

5. Breakaway goal, another gold

Crosby's highlight of the 2014 Sochi Olympics came at the most opportune time. He scored on a breakaway to help Canada complete a perfect six-game run with a 3-0 win against Sweden in the gold-medal game Feb. 23. He made a forehand-backhand deke and slid the puck past Sweden goalie Henrik Lundqvist to give Canada a two-goal lead at 16:43 of the second period.

 

6. Grand occasion

Crosby scored his 1,000th NHL point on Feb. 16, 2017, against the Winnipeg Jets in Pittsburgh. He stripped the puck from Jets forward Blake Wheeler and set up forward Chris Kunitz for a one-timer from the slot at 6:28 of the first period. (He would get another assist, then score in overtime for a 4-3 win.) At 29 years, 193 days old, Crosby became the 11th-youngest player to reach 1,000 NHL points. He did it in 757 games, becoming the fastest active player to get to 1,000 points and the 12th fastest in history.

 

7. He's got Hart

On June 14, 2007, Crosby won his first Hart Trophy as League MVP in his second season, having scored 120 points (36 goals, 84 assists) in 2006-07. He became the youngest player (19) to win the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL points leader, and the only teenager in the history of the four major North American professional sports leagues to win a scoring title. The assist and point totals remain career highs.

 

8. Twice is nice

Crosby won his second Hart Trophy seven years later on June 24, 2014, receiving 128 of 137 first-place votes. He led the League in 2013-14 with 68 assists and 104 points (36 goals). He had points in 60 of the 80 games he played in and had 30 multipoint games.

 

9. Shootout in snow

Crosby scored in a shootout with snow falling to cap the first NHL Winter Classic on Jan. 1, 2008, helping to lift the visiting Penguins to a 2-1 win against the Buffalo Sabres at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

 

10. Dueling hat tricks

Crosby has always been linked with Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin, who also entered the NHL in the 2005-06 season. Crosby and the Penguins have defeated Ovechkin and the Capitals all three times they have faced each other in the playoffs. Arguably the most memorable game Crosby and Ovechkin have played head-to-head came on May 4, 2009, when each scored a hat trick in a 4-3 Washington win in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Penguins won the series in seven games and went on to win the Cup.

Video: 2009 Round 2, Gm2: Ovechkin, Crosby double hat-tricks

 

11. Performance for the ages

It can be argued Crosby clinched the Conn Smythe Trophy last season because of his performance in Game 5 of the Cup Final against the Predators, a 6-0 Penguins win on June 8, 2017. He had three assists and could not be contained. He opened the game by splitting defensemen Roman Josi and Ryan Ellis to turn a 1-on-2 into a breakaway. Crosby didn't score, but his play led to a Predators penalty, and Crosby set up defenseman Justin Schultz for a power-play goal at 1:31 of the first period.

 

12. Three points in clincher

On May 13, 2009, Crosby had two goals and an assist in Pittsburgh's 6-2 win at Washington in Game 7. He finished the series with 13 points (eight goals, five assists). Ovechkin had 14 points (eight goals, six assists).

 

13. Impressive return

After missing more than 10 months because of problems related to a concussion, Crosby returned to the Penguins lineup on Nov. 21, 2011, in a home game against the New York Islanders and dominated with four points (two goals, two assists) in a 5-0 win.

 

14. Joining exclusive club

Crosby became the 26th member of the IIHF's Triple Gold Club on May 17, 2015, when he captained Canada to the gold medal at the World Championship with a 6-1 win against Russia in Prague. To join the club, a player or coach must win the Stanley Cup, an Olympic gold medal and World Championship gold. Crosby is the only player in history to achieve all three as a captain.

 

15. First trip to Stanley Cup Final

Crosby had two assists to help the Penguins reach the Stanley Cup Final for the first time with a 6-0 home win against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final on May 18, 2008. Pittsburgh lost to the Red Wings in the Cup Final in six games.

 

16. Point man

Crosby scored six points (one goal, five assists) in an 8-4 home win against the Flyers on Dec. 13, 2006. It remains his NHL career high for points in a game; he tied it with two goals and four assists in a 6-4 home win against the Islanders on Jan. 19, 2010.

 

17. Bound for Pittsburgh

The Penguins won the chance to select Crosby at No. 1 by winning the 2005 NHL Draft Lottery on July 22. It was one of the worst-kept secrets in professional sports history that Crosby was going to whichever team won the lottery. The Penguins made him the No. 1 pick eight days later in Ottawa.

 

18. No. 87 arrives

Crosby made his NHL debut on the road against the New Jersey Devils on Oct. 5, 2005. He scored his first point too, assisting on Mark Recchi's power-play goal at 5:36 of the third period in a 5-1 loss, the first of the Penguins' 46 regulation losses that season.

 

19. First of many

Crosby scored his first NHL goal in his first home game, against the Boston Bruins on Oct. 8, 2005. It was a power-play goal at 18:32 of the second period that gave the Penguins a two-goal lead. They lost 7-6 in overtime.

 

20. Youngest to 100

On April 17, 2006, Crosby became the youngest NHL player (18 years, 253 days) to reach 100 points in a season, doing so in a 6-1 home win against the Islanders. He hit the mark with the third of his three assists. The rookie, who joined Dale Hawerchuk of the Jets (18 years, 354 days in 1981-82) as the only 18-year-olds in NHL history to score 100 points in a season, finished with 102 points (39 goals, 63 assists) in 79 games. Crosby has scored 100 or more points in five of his 12 seasons in the League (11 of which have been full NHL seasons).

Video: Memories: Sid is youngest to reach 100 points

 

21. Playoff debut

Crosby played his first Stanley Cup Playoff game April 11, 2007, at the Ottawa Senators. He scored a power-play goal with 49 seconds left in a 6-3 loss in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals.

 

22. Game-winner in Game 2

Crosby scored the first of nine playoff game-winners in his NHL career three nights after making his playoff debut. He scored at 11:44 of the third period to help the Penguins to a 4-3 win in Game 2 against the Senators on April 14, 2007.

 

23. Captain Crosby

The Penguins made Crosby the youngest full-time captain in NHL history on May 31, 2007. More than two months shy of his 20th birthday (19 years, 297 days old), Crosby surpassed Vincent Lecavalier, the forward who was named Tampa Bay Lightning captain at 19 years, 324 days old. Crosby has since been surpassed as the youngest captain in League history, first by Colorado Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog (19 years, 286 days) and most recently by Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (19 years, 266 days).

 

24. 100-200-300

Crosby scored his 100th NHL goal and got his 200th NHL assist to reach 300 points, all in the same game. He did it Oct. 18, 2008, when he had a goal and three assists in a 4-1 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

 

25. Toss those hats

Crosby scored the first of his 10 NHL hat tricks Oct. 28, 2006, at the Flyers. The Penguins won 8-2.

 

26. Birthday parade

Crosby celebrated his 22nd birthday on Aug. 7, 2009, with his first Stanley Cup parade in Cole Harbour. A crowd estimated at up to 75,000, including spectators from as far away as Alberta, lined the streets. More than 25,000 were estimated to be at the finish line at Cole Harbour Place, where Crosby played his minor hockey and continues to train.

Video: Crosby brings the cup home, celebrates birthday

 

27. Parade, Part 2

Crosby brought the Cup back home to Cole Harbour for another parade on July 16, 2016. The route through Cole Harbour was shorter this time, but Crosby was greeted by a crowd of more than 30,000, according to police. The crowds on either side of the streets along the route swelled to 10 and 11 people deep at times. "Sure enough, it was packed again," he said.

 

28. Among the Greatest

As the player judged by many to be the best of his generation, Crosby has long been linked with some of the great players in the history of the game, including Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux. On Jan. 27, 2017, as part of the League's Centennial celebration, Crosby joined Gretzky, Lemieux and 97 others on the list of the 100 Greatest NHL Players.

Video: Sidney Crosby delivered on much-hyped promise

 

29. In World of his own

Crosby ended last season by winning the Cup and the Conn Smythe Trophy for the second straight year. He started it by captaining Team Canada to the championship of the World Cup of Hockey 2016 with a 2-1 win against Team Europe on Sept. 29, 2016. Crosby was also named tournament MVP after finishing as the leading scorer with 10 points (three goals, seven assists) in six games, all wins.

 

30. Hometown surprise

While spending last summer in Cole Harbour, Crosby saw a sign on the front lawn of the Pottie family's home in nearby Enfield, Nova Scotia, that read "SID PLEASE SIGN MY JERSEY." Three weeks went by and the sign was taken down by the family, but Crosby remembered it and made an unannounced visit to sign the jersey on Aug. 5, 2016. The Potties didn't have a marker for him to use, so Crosby went to his truck, got one and came back to sign the jersey. He stayed for 20 minutes and chatted with Tricia Pottie and her 21-year-old daughter, Madisyn.

View More