NHL Lacking Star-Power Without Crosby-Ovechkin Rivalry

January 28th, 2012 by Christopher Granicolo Leave a reply »

The hockey world is not the same.

It seems like ages ago when Sidney Crosby ingrained himself in the hearts and minds of Canadians forever with his climactic Golden Goal against the Americans in the final of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

With Crosby on the mend with a severe neck injury and reoccurring concussion symptoms, thus having played only one month of hockey in 2011, the absence of Canada’s golden boy in today's NHL is a marketing nightmare for the league.

Coincidentally, Crosby’s long-time rival Alex Ovechkin has seen his career take a massive dip after his lackluster performance in Vancouver 2010. Adhering to the defensive first system laid forth by then-coach Bruce Boudreau (who has since been fired), Ovechkin put up a very pedestrian 32-goal, 85-point campaign in 2010/2011. In a point-per-game view, it is an outstanding season for any player, but to his standards, this was seen as a weak season, as “Ovie” has averaged at least 50 goals and over 100 points in his 5 seasons prior to last year.

The pundits have criticized his lack of intensity and leadership ability since the Olympics. As the ...

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