Hockey Correspondent and Occasional Shakespeare Character, White Cover Magazine
Steven Stamkos loves Sidney Crosby, and Sidney Crosby thinks Steven Stamkos is pretty good, too.
No, really. That’s how it is. NHL.com’s Chris Adamski recapped his interviews with both Lightning and Penguin on Monday. While Stamkos was absolutely glowing in his appreciation of Sid the Kid (“A healthy Sidney Crosby (is the best player in the NHL)… It’s tough to argue that fact, in my eyes personally”), but Crosby thought Stamkos was just better than most others do.
It was a backhanded compliment, kind of, but that’s how the best have always been. You’d never hear Gretzky say anybody was better than him when he was at his height, and you won’t hear LeBron James say that, either. You will hear Kevin Durant rave about Bron Bron, though, and I’m sure Mario Lemieux uttered similar words about The Great One from time-to-time, too.
Stamkos is known as a goal-scorer, but he’s transcended that and pretty much everyone knows it now. They know Stamkos is deserving of a Hart Trophy one day to go along with all his Rocket Richards, but Crosby’s still trying to convince you that he’s better than you think he is.
“Everyone knows about his big shot, and he doesn’t need much time or space to get a shot off,” Sid said of Steve. “But I think he competes every night, and that’s why he’s definitely been a consistent player.”
Competes every night. A consistent player.
Quick, say less before my hard-on shrinks completely.
Sid, we don’t expect you to call him the best in the game (because we all know you know that’s you), but you couldn’t even drop a phenomenal or a truly great? Would that have really been so hard? Stamkos isn’t Alex Ovechkin. He loves you.
“Everyone has their own opinion, but just how dangerous he is on the ice, the way he controls the puck — exciting things happen every time he touches it,” said Stamkos. “It’s always a challenge when you play against (Pittsburgh), and since he’s got back healthy this year he’s been a force out there.
“To be compared in the same sentence to him is pretty special for me. I think I still have a long way to go and a lot of things to work on before you get mentioned with a guy like that.”
Lucky for you, Steve, Sidney seems to agree.