Jumping To Conclusions?

Are we as a society so ready for the next best thing we don’t appreciate the here and now? Last night I watched the Boston Bruins at the Washington Capitals, I was surprised at some of the media’s claims about the Caps so I will share some of them here.

Corey Masisak is a writer for the Washington Capitals and he ‘tweeted’ that with the ‘goal’, that to be honest should not have been a goal, by Nicklas Backstrom was more than Peter Forsberg ever had. While Corey never said he was ‘better’ than Forsberg he certainly inferred it. While I am an Avalanche girl, most people will agree that Peter isn’t easily bested. There’s few that have the offensive or defensive power that Foppa did. The ONLY player to have a positive plus/minus record every season and a career plus/minus of plus-241. Not only did he create plays and score, but more importantly he protected his goalie by playing smart on both ends of the ice. In addition, Forsberg has been plagued with injury his entire career, had he been able to avoid injuries his numbers (which are already impressive) might have been higher. To state that Backstrom in his third NHL season is even in the same class as Peter is pre-mature at best. One day he might be the best Swede to ever play, but let’s let him finish his career before we start making statements.  When Nicky Backstrom has a Calder, Art Ross, Hart Memorial, and becomes the second Swede to have two World Championship Golds, two Stanley Cups, and two Gold Olympic Medals AND a stamp in Sweden for his gutsy move in the Olympics, THEN we can talk.  Until then, let the guy play and stop comparing him to Peter the Great. 

Then Versus decided they would make a claim about the Capitals. Versus commentators compared the Capitals to that of the Red Wings. As stated above I’m an Avalanche fan, which automatically dictates I despise all things Red Wings. That being said I know the Red Wings are 11 time Stanley Cup Champions for a reason. The Wings have been able to attract big names, train and coach new guys so they fit the program and the loyalty of Hall of Fame veterans is amazing (they keep the big names year after year after year). To compare the Capitals, who have not won a Cup yet, to the 11 time Cup champions is a bit of a stretch.  Besides the 11 Stanley Cups they’ve been to the post-season dance the past 19 years in a row.  That’s currently the best record for ANY North American sports team.  The Hawks just ended the Red Wings’ eight year Division Champion streak, eight years of having the best record in their division.  So how can commentators even begin to compare the Capitals to the Wings?  While the Caps are impressive by anyone’s standards, there is not other team in the NHL that is as respected, feared and decorated as the Detroit Red Wings.  Maybe the Capitals will start their tradition of excellence in the Eastern Conference and begin their domination like the Wings have in the Western, but until that point, until they do let’s stop making comparisons.   

While Sidney Crosby is trying to live up to the pressure of being pegged by The Great One as The Next One and most likely to break his records there’s already talk of who the next Sidney Crosby is. Sid, who is turning 23 this August has only been in the league for five years yet fans and puckheads alike are wanting to know who the next Crosby is. Isn’t that a little pre-mature??  Hockey enthusiasts called John Tavares the ‘Next Sidney Crosby’.  Tavares may have some of the same skills, but those outside the hockey world say “Tavares who?”  I’m sure he will be great in his own right, but people need to stop labeling players as ‘the next (fill in the blank)’ and just let them be great.  Not everyone can be of Wayne Gretzky‘s caliber, but he accomplished what he did because role players knew their roles, enforcers protected, and he had guys to make and take the pass from.  This is a TEAM sport, one player can elevate the level of play his teams performs at, but it’s not basketball and one player can’t carry the team.

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