Actually, Crosby is very similar in many ways to Yzerman when Yzerman broke into the league. I know many of you aren't old enough to remember those days, but he was touted as the next greatest thing to save hockey, the golden boy to break Gretzkys records and was the face of hockey, like it or not. I remember seeing Yzermans face plastered on just about every fast food container you could buy and frankly, it took a few years for Yzerman to mature. I have nothing but the highest respect for Yzerman now, but I sure didn't when he debuted. Thing is, Yzerman has almost 20 years more experience at this point than Crosby.
I am no Crosby fan, but I think he did an admirable job couping with an unrealistic level of pressure put on his shoulders by the likes of Hockey Canada and Gary Butthead.
WTF? Yzerman was NEVER touted to be the next greatest thing to save hockey, EVER. He was a after thought draft pick when LaFontaine was taken by the Islanders. If he was supposed to be the next Gretzky, he would've gone first overall instead of Brian Lawton. Crysby has played in a post lock-out, no obstruction era of Hockey, along with some pretty great talent on his team. Who did Yzerman have on his team when he was scoring 60 goals? Exactly! Gerard Gallant was the next best player. Plus Yzerman played in whole different NHL along with the two greatest players to ever play the game in Gretzky and Lemeiux. Even while being "Number 3 With A Bullet" (that's for those of you who remember the SI article) he was NEVER touted to be anything better than #3. The first time you ever heard "The Next One" is when Eric Lindros was drafted. Then you heard, Fedorov, the Russian Greatzky, Selanne, the Finnish Gretzky, etc, etc...
Took how many years for Yzerman to mature? Yzerman was tearing up the league until his neck injury in 1994 (the year Fedorov won Hart and Selke) and was nearly traded to Ottawa in that off season by Bowman. Bowman took him aside after Ilitch nixt that trade and told him you have one more chance to play my way or its the highway, that is when he became a Selke-Type player.
You said you didn't have respect for him when he debuted, but at the time, there wasn't much respect for the Wings all-together. You look at their number 1 picks for the previous few years and couple that along with their continuous ineptness, there was no reason to think another high draft pick was going to change that. But, me being old enough to remember Steve when he first played here, he may not have scored over 100 points as a rookie (although 87 wasn't too bad for that era) GURANTEE he didn't dive, whine and cray as much as the Golden Boy did in his first couple of season's. Comparing Crysby to Yzerman is like comparing Gretzky to Howe, two different types of NHL, I would LOVE to see a 22 year old Gretzky, Lemeiux or Yzerman in today's NHL, you be saying Crysby who?
If and when Crysby passes Yzerman in points and awards and Stanley Cups, then MAYBE we can talk about comparisons, but still put Crysby in the league circa 1988 and he isn't half the player he is in todays NHL.