Solid end to a tough regular season. Mrzaek only seems to win if he's getting a shutout (2-4-0 on the season). Thought our newbie Dmen looked solid, still looked like rookies but they won't be far off. Bertuzzi looked real good, but I don't see a future for him on this team, I still think he retires after the playoffs. Nice to see Datsyuk playing at game level, didn't look 100%, more like 85% but looks like he'll be a real threat in the playoffs.
He's been "shoved down our throats" because he's been consistently the best player in the league. He had all the pressure in the world put on to him to save a franchise, and he delivered. He scored the gold medal winning goal for Canada. He's won the Stanley Cup.(on the ice at Joe Louis...ouch!) I can see why that pisses people off. Datsyuk was whining last night when he thought a call wasn't made against him. Big deal. Every player does it. Does he do it more than other players? Maybe. So what? Players do what they can to get an advantage. I'm sure no Red Wing has ever dove or faked an injury to try and draw a penalty, EVER.
So all the "outrage" is over one anonymous poll from 5 years ago when he was 21? If that's what gets you worked up, have at it.
The only issue I have with Crosby was him not following the proper handshake protocol after winning the Cup. I think Canadians would have went bats*** crazy if a European player had done the same thing. Otherwise, I just don't like Crosby because he plays for another team and he's good. Nobody really hates players on other teams that suck.
I'm with you on this one... Crosby from 5 years ago I hated because he was diving and whining and acting like an entitled brat. He's matured, he is a far better player now than he was then, and since that concussion took him off the radar, I've cooled off about him. Now, he's just a very good player who is embellishing just as much as the next guy. He's just a better person than he was, that doesn't mean he's in the league of class like Zetterberg, Yzerman and co. Crosby is just another player in the league who is really good, and I just don't get bent out of shape by his antics anymore.
Although, I assume over the next three weeks though, I will be hating him all over again.
I've never liked the whole "coached the team well despite injuries" argument. By that rationale Blysma should win it, considering Pittsburgh has more injuries to equally important players, and has a better record.
To me it's not just injuries, but the success of the guys who replaced them. Every game on NBC this year (and CBC too I think) has been about how good a job of coaching Babcock has done this year. He's had to actually coach more this year etc. The difference between Penguins injuries and ours comes down to the fact they still had their top line of Crosby and Malkin for most of the year. (Crosby has missed 1 game) As well they have 7 players with 71+ GP vs. our 4 (Quincey, Miller, Kronwall and Lashoff) We have lost to injury a lot of our leadership, we've practically gone through a rebuild while the season was still going and yet we found a way to (almost) make the playoffs. We have players exceeding their potential, all the young guys are chipping in and we are better now than when we started. This is a testament to a good coach, getting the most out of his players. As a fan base here, we didn't think we would make the playoffs because of all these injuries, and yet Babcock kept this team believing, pushing his players to be better, to learn and compete with the best of teams. Pittsburgh didn't suffer that kind of loss, yes they lost Letang and Vokoun for practically the entire season, but they still had Fleury (and defence doesn't matter to them anyway). That's why I think Babcock deserves recognition as the best coach this year. Roy and Cooper did great jobs with their teams too, but I think Babcock had more responsibility for his team's successes and failures than the others.