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Historic Hatred For Crosby (Mod Warning - Post #2)

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05-12-2014, 12:01 PM
  #1
Bill McCreary
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Historic Hatred For Crosby (Mod Warning - Post #2)

With all of the talk about Crosby's cheapshots and overall villainy in this postseason thus far, I wanted to compare how he's viewed in comparison to other players that were considered the best of their generation. Richard, Howe, Orr, Gretzky, Lemieux, Jagr, all seemed to be viewed with reverence and respect by other fan bases leaguewide. I would love to get a more experienced perspective by those who have watched the game for decades longer than I have. In general, Crosby is not hated around the league for his skill and talent, but for his on-ice antics and general behavior. We all remember Lemieux getting a standing ovation in Philadelphia twice, in 93 when he returned from cancer treatments and 97 when he retired for the first time. I can't imagine Crosby getting such treatment when he retires. I wanted to get other views on this anomaly.

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05-12-2014, 12:12 PM
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Killion
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^^^ Fair enough, and it goes without saying if we get tourists pulling drive-byes with any frequency this thread gets Closed.

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05-12-2014, 12:14 PM
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Bill McCreary
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^^^ Fair enough, and it goes without saying if we get tourists pulling drive-byes with any frequency this thread gets Closed.
I'm hoping that doesn't happen. I'm just intrigued by the idea that for the first time in NHL history, the best player of his generation will be remembered as a whiner and a diver by the majority of hockey fans, and not revered and loved.

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05-12-2014, 12:16 PM
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vadim sharifijanov
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gretzky was soft, mario was a whiner.

i think the difference is crosby has been in the league almost a decade and still hasn't changed everyone's mind about him. gretzky eventually did by sheer force of destroying the record book; mario did the same but to a lesser degree, and you could argue that he had to get cancer to silence all of the haters.

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05-12-2014, 12:18 PM
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Bill McCreary
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Originally Posted by vadim sharifijanov View Post
gretzky was soft, mario was a whiner.

i think the difference is crosby has been in the league almost a decade and still hasn't changed everyone's mind about him.
This is what I thought was going to happen to Crosby. Sure, his first couple of years were tainted with perceptions of whining and diving, but as he matured, he would shred that reputation and become respected around the league like Mario and Gretzky. But that hasn't happened, if anything, the reputation from early in his career has grown even stronger.

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05-12-2014, 12:29 PM
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Mario was widely hated the same way Crosby is today, and for many of the same reasons. The difference is that Mario was a more entertaining player than Crosby, and he had those dramatic comebacks. It's hard to keep on hating a guy when he drops out of the league to fight cancer, and it's even harder to keep on hating him when he wins that battle, then comes back and lights up the league again.

Eddie Shore certainly wasn't a beloved figure when he played. His eminence as a hockey player was acknowledged, but he was also widely known as a diver as well as for his propensity toward unhinged violence. And unlike the Marios and Richards of the world, Shore never aged gracefully into sainthood -- he was even more of a dirtbag as an owner than he was as a player.

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05-12-2014, 12:30 PM
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Crosby is a player whose had HUGE expectations on him forever. Despite his accomplishments, the lovers and haters, both whom have many of the same feelings about Crosby, the expectations have grown. Unfairly...I would add. The comparisons to 99 and 66 or even Lafleur and Jagr are unfair. 99 and 66 were superior players, Lafleur played on a dynasty and Jagr, being European, has had far less expectations on him. Each of those aforementioned players also played in a less balanced NHL. Also, today's players are playing under a microscope unprecedented in sports history. Crosby is writing his own story of his career and this does not get enough respect. The guy is a hardworking, gifted player who has given his all to the Pens and Team Canada. He can't control the other 99% of what happens with teams around him. I say cut him some slack and just enjoy.

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05-12-2014, 12:44 PM
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I'm not sure why, but to me Crosby is just not Likable. maybe its just his face

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05-12-2014, 12:45 PM
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TheDevilMadeMe
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Maurice Richard absolutely was hated by other fanbases. A lot of it had to do with his antics too, though prejudice was certainly a factor as well

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05-12-2014, 12:47 PM
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TheDevilMadeMe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Messier View Post
This is what I thought was going to happen to Crosby. Sure, his first couple of years were tainted with perceptions of whining and diving, but as he matured, he would shred that reputation and become respected around the league like Mario and Gretzky. But that hasn't happened, if anything, the reputation from early in his career has grown even stronger.
Part of it is a function of the internet age, which makes it a lot easier for "haters" to validate each others' opinions

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05-12-2014, 12:56 PM
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Part of it is a function of the internet age, which makes it a lot easier for "haters" to validate each others' opinions
A big part I would think.

I think Crosby at times gets too much critic, but he does have certain aspects to his game that are easy to pick on. He dives (at least he used to), whines and sometimes he starts **** and doesn't take the heat from it.

Overall, much tougher guy than he gets credit for, but he still has ways to go before he gets everyone acceptance. His playoff struggles are not helping.

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05-12-2014, 02:41 PM
  #12
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A big part I would think.

I think Crosby at times gets too much critic, but he does have certain aspects to his game that are easy to pick on. He dives (at least he used to), whines and sometimes he starts **** and doesn't take the heat from it.

Overall, much tougher guy than he gets credit for, but he still has ways to go before he gets everyone acceptance. His playoff struggles are not helping.
I kind of don't see as much hatred of Crosby anymore, except by a very vocal minority, ever shrinking. Most people don't even care about Crosby, they just accept him as an excellent player. Lindros alternately was hated and reviled from the beginning and it never really wore off, it just got worse. Both were and always will be compared to 99 and 66. Both are found wanting as mere humans, mere superstars... Not demi-gods like their two peerless older supposed peers. Crosby is accepted by most fans as the greatest mortal player on earth. I kind of think the concussions really drove the mortalness of 87. I think he is always growing out of the continued shadow of his boss and the Great One.

Fans are shocked by mortality. How is Ovechkin so much less than he was 5 years ago? Karlsson went from being almost past his one dimensional image, annointed as one of the true greats then an Achilles injury and a mediocre two way season where he crushes all other D offensively and he is barely a top 10 D man. Or a thread like this when Crosby is still alive in the playoffs and is only struggling at about a PPG in the playoffs... It is a big deal that he is in a little slump and his team is not yet eliminated.

Crosby, Ovechin, Karlsson. All are perpetually under a microscope.... A hot or cold couple of months and somehow stud players somehow change their value. Crosby should get a pass, always, based on his strong compete level, consistency, committment, and proven success. He still doesn't get it. More than most players I guess, but not like 66 or 99. They were NEVER doubted. (After their first Cups).

Labels can turn around 180 degrees. Like the choker Isles and Wings turning into a dynasty and a 20 year league domination.

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05-12-2014, 03:11 PM
  #13
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Not that this didn't apply to Gretzky and Lemieux as well, but I've often thought about the fact that Crosby came into this leauge with a reputation before he even stepped on the ice.

He played against a lot of these guys at the junior level and was embarassing guys who had two or three years on him (and how many pounds?). As a fourteen year-old I'm sure it was frustrating and I'm sure he whined a little bit about it. So I'm guessing he came into the league with a reputation for being a punk. And at times he hasn't necessarily helped himself (although I'm not convinced he does anything that other players don't do).

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05-12-2014, 03:27 PM
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The League does not do a lot to encourage sportsmanship and respect, and I think this factors in more than ever, especially with more media and internet etc, than in the past.

All that said, I think Crosby will be remembered well. No one outside their fanbase liked Howe, Richard, Mikita, etc or even Beliveau , Hull or Orr when they were playing against their team. I think the appreciation comes afterward to a great degree.

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05-12-2014, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Messier View Post
With all of the talk about Crosby's cheapshots and overall villainy in this postseason thus far, I wanted to compare how he's viewed in comparison to other players that were considered the best of their generation. Richard, Howe, Orr, Gretzky, Lemieux, Jagr, all seemed to be viewed with reverence and respect by other fan bases leaguewide. I would love to get a more experienced perspective by those who have watched the game for decades longer than I have. In general, Crosby is not hated around the league for his skill and talent, but for his on-ice antics and general behavior. We all remember Lemieux getting a standing ovation in Philadelphia twice, in 93 when he returned from cancer treatments and 97 when he retired for the first time. I can't imagine Crosby getting such treatment when he retires. I wanted to get other views on this anomaly.
Two words: social media.

Prior to the explosion of mass media, social or otherwise, "consensus" was a tangible commodity of sorts. That is, fewer media channels - and those filling them with commentary - for the most part determined what the "opinion" was about a player. Today, everyone is an expert and has a megaphone. Thus, little (less) consensus, more splintered analysis.

And a lot of hatred, hockey related or otherwise. But that's another topic.

When Gretzky was tearing up the league, especially in the early 80s, there was a fair amount of condescension toward his style of play (the ever opinionated and honest Denis Potvin in an on-air interview, referred to it as "river hockey"). Likewise, he, similar to #87, was deemed a whiner by some, especially given his tirades in the 1983 SCF blowout care of Billy Smith (and his stick) and NYI. As recent as the late 90s, in a great annual scouting report book put out by Sherry Ross, he was referred to as a "weeny". So, yes, he was and is rightly revered, but not immune from criticism.

Mario used to be derisively serenaded at MSG by the ever respectful NYR fans. And when Adam Graves chopped his wrist and put him out for a few games in a '92 playoff series, the Garden crowd applauded as #66 lay on the ice.

Both Mario and Gretzky also took verbal hits in the media for complaining about the level of cheapshots that went on in the game in their time.

Jagr was RIGHTLY ripped during the spring of '01, when he was a sulking while the Pens were making a run to the Eastern Finals on the back of the recently returned #66. (Resulting in his trade that summer to the Capitals). He also has had his share of critics, often unjustified, for his play away from the puck. And, of course, the European bias of some, more pronounced in his prime then it is today, reared its head at times.

Can't speak to Howe, Orr and Richard. Before my time for the most part...and viewed as Hockey Gods by yours truly and those of my generation.

Sidney Crosby is a great player. His "behavior and "on-ice antics" are the creation of those looking to detract from that greatness, IMO. For they really are so, so small in the grand scheme of things, not at all dissimilar to the way that many other players in the league conduct themselves on the ice. But then again, on HF, NHLers are casually referred to as "gutless" and "dirty" and worse, so the respect that "some" fans have for players in general is lacking. Give these critics the megaphone (and anonymity) of social media and suddenly the criticism reaches "historic" levels, I suppose. Frankly, I'm certain neither he, nor his teammates, couldn't care less. Nor should they.


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05-12-2014, 03:50 PM
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The coverage he gets is also very polarizing. The NHL seems to want to market him like he's Michael Jordan, heads and shoulders above everyone else, and as a result he's crammed down everyone's throat and every little routine play he makes is lionized.

As long as this is the case, I see the backlash as fairly inevitable. I suspect he has a very large number of out-of-market fans, but that they've made haters out of a sizable percentage of everyone else that isn't won over. It's not dissimilar to the way the Leafs are covered in Canada and the resulting backlash there...

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05-12-2014, 04:00 PM
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As long as this is the case, I see the backlash as fairly inevitable. I suspect he has a very large number of out-of-market fans, but that they've made haters out of a sizable percentage of everyone else that isn't won over. It's not dissimilar to the way the Leafs are covered in Canada and the resulting backlash there...
Or any other successful player or team in any other sport. The love/hate dynamic just goes along with the fame.

Having thought it over, I'm actually more curious about which elite-of-the-elite players DIDN'T get a bunch of hate in their day. I'm not sure I've ever heard someone speak ill of Jean Beliveau for example.

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05-12-2014, 04:02 PM
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I don't know about 66, 68 and 99 being viewed with "reverence and respect". I had kids in high school in that era and the girls loved 99 and their boyfriends were jealous of him, the francophones gravitated toward 66. The media fawned over Gretzky a fair bit, Lemieux was diminished until that Canada Cup where he "matured" under Gretzky's guidance. All a lot of rubbish to be honest.

When you're best at your position you get disparaged and people get jealous. No different for "Crysby" (if the mods allow that name-calling as an example) than for others I suppose.

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05-12-2014, 04:13 PM
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Part of it is a function of the internet age, which makes it a lot easier for "haters" to validate each others' opinions
This is the number one reason he is so hated. I'm not saying he doesnt deserve his fair share of criticism but I think he'd be viewed in a much different way if it was 1984 instead of 2014.

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05-12-2014, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
Or any other successful player or team in any other sport. The love/hate dynamic just goes along with the fame.

Having thought it over, I'm actually more curious about which elite-of-the-elite players DIDN'T get a bunch of hate in their day. I'm not sure I've ever heard someone speak ill of Jean Beliveau for example.
Only 3 recent players really come to mind. Yzerman, Sakic and Lidstrom.

When it comes to Crosby's actions, just ask yourself this...could you or have you seen any of the 3 aforementioned player doing the same thing?
The answer, 99% of the time is no.

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05-12-2014, 04:42 PM
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To all of the users that have chimed in, thank you very much, it has been enlightening. Often times, I try to stay off the main board and post here because of the average intelligence of the poster on this particular forum is much higher. As a Pens fan, I've developed a love/hate relationship with Crosby. I can never truly disavow him, but this playoff has gotten me closer to the precipice than ever before. If anything, I can now fully empathize with those who have had derisive things to say about him in the past.

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05-12-2014, 05:23 PM
  #22
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
Or any other successful player or team in any other sport. The love/hate dynamic just goes along with the fame.

Having thought it over, I'm actually more curious about which elite-of-the-elite players DIDN'T get a bunch of hate in their day. I'm not sure I've ever heard someone speak ill of Jean Beliveau for example.
Beliveau took some heat. He was criticized as being the most talked about Junior prospect in Canada who refused to leave Quebec for the bright lights of the NHL, as though he "might be scared", not up to the task. Wants to be a Big Fish in a Little Pond.... Then when he was playing for Montreal, first couple of seasons & throughout his career some niggling & nagging injuries, might be "unreliable" huh? Never mind that tough guy Wild Bill Ezinicki said "hitting Beliveau was like hitting an oak tree, you just bounced right off of him".... Then there were the comparisons to Maurice Richard. Well, no one was going to be another Rocket Richard however he'd set the bar, passed the torch to Beliveau and no matter what Big Jean did, "not as good as Maurice; seems disinterested out there, lacks emotion, the fire of the Rocket".... They all got it, get it. Bobby Hull "useless, lazy defensively". Frank Mahovlich "distracted, preoccupied, cant get it together, rushes that lead nowhere, defensive liability at times, asleep at the wheel". On & on. Bobby Orr "hair trigger temper, easy to get off his game, weak defensively". If people cant find something wrong, something to complain about they'll simply magnify the most minute of flaws turning an ice cube into an iceberg of the same size that took out the Titanic. Fatal flaw in that boys steel. Not thick enough, too much manganese, brittle, wont last....

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05-12-2014, 06:14 PM
  #23
TheDevilMadeMe
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Only 3 recent players really come to mind. Yzerman, Sakic and Lidstrom.

When it comes to Crosby's actions, just ask yourself this...could you or have you seen any of the 3 aforementioned player doing the same thing?
The answer, 99% of the time is no.
Lidstrom definitely has his share of detractors - usually old school fans who think he plays the game the wrong way (not physical enough, etc).

Sakic and Yzerman are just about the only two I can think of. Even Divelanche.com struggled to find things to say about Sakic - and when they did, it was usually to compare him favorably to Forsberg's (hilariously exaggerated) antics.

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05-12-2014, 06:39 PM
  #24
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yzerman was thought to be a choker for years.

sakic was called an adam oates-type mercenary by a very small minority too. went back to junior after the draft due to a contract impasse and then made himself way way more expensive after winning the chl player of the year; that ancient history was dredged up after the rangers offer sheet. but beyond that, yeah i've never heard a bad word said about burnaby joe.

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05-12-2014, 07:59 PM
  #25
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I wasn't aware there was any hatred for Crosby (aside from fans of the Pens' rival teams) until I came on this board recently.

I suspect it comes down to two things:

1) He's the first hockey superstar of the social-media era, and so his exploits are over-reported, over-analyzed, over-criticized, over-everything. Compare when Gretzky was playing, many of his games weren't even televised. Even in the Lindros era, few hockey fans used the Internet.

It's easy to get sick of Crosby, by no fault of his own.

2) He's been WAY over-hyped as "the face of the game" by the North American media (this also exacerbates problem #1). His every trip to the bathroom was being reported by hockey media before he'd played one game. This makes it much easier to get annoyed with him (also not his fault).

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