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Putting Crosby's 1,300th Point in Perspective

by Michelle Crechiolo @PensInsideScoop / Penguins Team Reporter

Sidney Crosby recorded his 1,300th career point in the Penguins' win over Buffalo on Thursday, becoming the 36th player in NHL history to accomplish the feat.

The milestone in itself is absolutely incredible, but the context surrounding it makes it even more remarkable.

The Penguins captain became the eighth-fastest player to reach the mark, accomplishing it in his 1,017th game. He joins the following names, a list of all-time greats who are all in the Hall of Fame (except for Jagr, who will be inducted when - or if - he ever retires). 

Wayne Gretzky: 539

Mario Lemieux: 633 

Marcel Dionne: 946

Phil Esposito: 966

Steve Yzerman: 982

Jaromir Jagr: 1,014

Bryan Trottier: 1,014

Sidney Crosby: 1,017 

"He's in elite company, and this milestone is just more evidence that he deserves being in the elite company," Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan said. "He's one of the game's best players of all time. So all of these milestones that he's accruing here along the way are all just evidence of the body of work that he's put together." 

Lemieux, Jagr and Trottier all played for Pittsburgh, with Crosby's addition meaning that half (!) of the above list have appeared in black and gold - which is just another reminder of how fortunate Penguins fans have been over the years. 

Like Lemieux, Crosby - who became the first player to appear in 1,000 games for the Penguins on Feb. 20 - has recorded every single one of those points with Pittsburgh. That puts the team alongside the Detroit Red Wings and Boston Bruins as the only franchises with two 1,300-point scorers. Crosby is also the 12th player to record his first 1,300 points with one team.

Tweet from @PenguinsPR: With a three-point game tonight (3A), Sidney Crosby became the 12th player in NHL history to record his first 1,300 points with one team. pic.twitter.com/lFRlILVJGC

Crosby, 33, is also just the third-active player to record 1,300 points after Joe Thornton and Alex Ovechkin, and he needed a lot less games than either of them.

Ovechkin, 35, reached it earlier this month in his 1,177th game - 160 more than Crosby. Thornton, 41, got it in 1,521 games played - 504 more than Crosby. 

And what's even more mind-blowing is that Crosby could have accomplished it even quicker if he hadn't missed so much time with injuries over the years.

After the game, Crosby joked that reaching this particular milestone meant it's a sign he's been playing for a pretty long time.

"That being said, I think it's always nice to get those achievements and those milestones," he said.

He earned it with the secondary assist on longtime linemate Jake Guentzel's empty-netter goal with 1:04 left to play in Pittsburgh's 4-0 win, which was his third helper of the night.

"Glad to see Guentzy put one in," Crosby said. "He's had a ton of chances; he's been doing so many great things since the start of the year. Love seeing him put the puck in the net. So it was nice to see him get rewarded with that one and nice to get the 1,300th point there."

Video: BUF@PIT: Crosby nets 1,300th point on Guentzel's goal

And as Sullivan said, it's fitting that Crosby got it in a pulled-goalie situation where they put him in a defensive posture. He made a terrific play along the wall in the Penguins zone to gain possession of the puck and get it over to Bryan Rust for the clear and subsequent goal from Guentzel.

It's just one example of why Crosby should be a top contender for the Selke Trophy as the NHL's best two-way forward, which would be another well-deserved award to add to his case. 

"I think it's just so indicative of how good he is on both sides of the puck," Sullivan said. "We rely on him at both ends of the rink, and for me, that's just so fitting for him because it's just an indication of his complete game."

Trottier, who won two of his six Stanley Cups as a player with the Penguins in 1991 and '92 and ranks right above Crosby on the list of fastest players to 1,300, might have summed it up best. 

"He's so dynamic," Trottier said. "His quiver is just so full of different arrows. He's a special kid."

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