Boston Bruins captain Brad Marchand believes it’s high time that Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby starts getting more credit for the Hart Trophy-worthy season he’s having in his 19th season in the NHL.
Crosby scored the game-winner and had two assists in a 6-5 win over the Bruins that also saw Brad Marchand light the lamp twice, including a shorthanded goal that tied the game 3:18 into the third period before Crosby won it 11:19 into the final frame. After the game, Marchand had nothing but praise and love for his fellow Nova Scotian and criticized all the attention and praise that’s directed at the younger stars in the league instead of Crosby.
“He’s still one of the best in the world,” the Boston Bruins captain said. “He’s not really getting the credit he deserves right now. A lot of the attention is on the younger guys, but if you look at the details of the game and the full 200 feet, he’s by far the best player in the league. He and (Nathan) MacKinnon, two good Nova Scotia boys.”
The non-stop work ethic and desire to win that’s still burning inside Sidney Crosby is what impresses Marchand most.
“The work you put in when you’re younger and throughout your career doesn’t benefit you the next season; it’s the continuation of building it. It’s something he’s done so well for such a long time,” Marchand pointed out. “The way he trains and takes care of himself. His competitiveness on and off the ice is unmatched.”
Marchand believes that the lack of credit for the season Crosby is having is because of an ever-changing NHL culture that focuses more on flash, finesse, and highlight reel plays for Instagram and TikTok. While Chicago Blackhawks rookie sensation Connor Bedard is a special player who can provide all that, Marchand doesn’t really think the 18-year-old should be compared to Crosby.
“He’s not as flashy as some of the higher-end guys. He plays hard and direct,” Marchand said of Crosby’s game. “He plays a winning way. The young guys are getting the attention. If you look at the attention Bedard is getting compared to Sid, they’re not at the same level right now. Bedard is a helluva player for his age, but Crosby is one of the best to ever play the game.”
As far as Marchand is concerned, with the free-wheeling and less physical style of the NHL now, a player of Crosby’s caliber can keep playing past this season if he wants to.
“He’ll be able to play at that level as long as he wants to, especially with how soft the league is getting,” Marchand said. “You’re not getting banged and beat up the way guys were getting in the past. He can skate so well that he’s not going to slow down.”