The Pittsburgh Penguins are off to a characteristically strong start once again this season, taking 10 out of a possible 12 points in their six tilts to date. They’re 4-0-0 at home to start, with their only loss being a rough outing in which backup goaltender Jeff Zatkoff struggled mightily.
As expected, right in the middle of the strong start for the Pens is Sidney Crosby. The preseason favorite for the Calder Trophy is off to a strong start, once again, averaging two points per game so far in the young season. He’s posted 12 points in six games, going for five goals and seven assists, with a plus-1 rating.
What is great about Crosby is not only the fact that he’s an amazing player in his own right, but he has the ability to make his teammates instantly better by stepping on the ice with them. Look no farther than Chris Kunitz for a prime example of Crosby having a positive impact on his teammates.
If Crosby can continue to produce at the rate he’s going, and his teammates, such as Kunitz, continue to fare well while logging time next to him, then there’s no stopping Crosby from taking home the hardware when it’s all said and done this year.
Last year was a similar story. Crosby absolutely cruised through the regular season during the lockout shortened campaign, before a broken jaw brought an end to his season, costing him the MVP. In just 36 games, he notched a fantastic 56 points, including 41 helpers. Similar production this year, in a full season, almost guarantees that he’ll take home the Hart.
Regardless of what your personal opinion of Sidney Crosby may be, and the negative has more to do with his personality rather than his play, there’s no doubting the fact that we’re witnessing one of the greatest players to ever lace up the skates. He very well may run away with the Hart Trophy this season, if he continues to produce points at a startling clip like this.
Of course, we still have a long way to go still in this young 2013-14 season.