After seeing Sidney Crosby
bunt the puck into the Philadelphia Flyers
’ net in Game 6 of their first-round series, you got a sense of his deep repertoire of skills.
The fact he scored in a less-than-conventional fashion during a pressurized comeback in the Stanley Cup Playoffs tells you a whole lot more about Crosby.
The series with the Washington Capitals
will tell us even more. It might be a coin flip to decide who are the Penguins’ top rivals, the cross-state Flyers or Alex Ovechkin
and the Caps. Either way, Crosby and the Pens already have jumped into the pressure-cooker of the playoffs with both skates.
Defeating the Flyers was a solid start to the journey and Crosby was a dynamic part of the series victory with four goals and four assists in six games. He also won a hefty 63.5 percent of his faceoffs, while playing more than 21 minutes per game. Yes, Evgeni Malkin
had nine points in the first round (4 goals, 5 assists), but there remains little doubt that Crosby is the catalyst. The fact he scored while linemates Bill Guerin
and Chris Kunitz
were relatively quiet is another huge indicator of Crosby’s value on the ice and the desire of Pittsburgh natives to toast his exploits.