Sid to Play in NYC Tonight: What to Expect When You’re Expecting
“Get your popcorn ready.”
EVERYTHING for Sid is now a mind-game. The mental part is the only one that matters right now, as we already know he has the ability to light up the league right out of the gates, as he did during his last comeback earlier this season. If he so chooses, Sid, Malk, Fleury et al can go on a tear to end the season, catching New York for the top seed in the division, but it’s not so simple.
Before his return some four months ago, I wrote about how Sidney needs to change his game. His bread and butter is his gritty, feisty play in front of the net, in corners and in other players’ faces. That’s him. He’s not shy, he doesn’t coast, and he doesn’t take a backseat, though whether he SHOULD is open to debate.
There are two choices Sidney needs to choose from before stepping on the ice tonight:
A. Return to his old aggressive style
B. Alter his game for the sake of longevity
The Pittsburgh Penguins have told Sid that his concussion-like symptoms were not attributed to a concussion, but can anyone be sure if the club is actually acting selflessly? Doctors first said he did have a concussion, so how can they do an about-face two years after the initial injury? Fishy. If Crosby truly believes his injury was not caused by a concussion, then it will dictate the manner in which he returns. Long live the King, I say.
The fear, obviously, is that he re-injures whatever injury he experienced, thereby knocking him out of hockey forever. I truly believe he is one similar injury away from retirement. Of course all players are susceptible to injury no matter their style of play, but obviously a more aggressive style begets a much higher chance of injury, it’s just logical. The question is whether or not Sidney, being the competitive guy he is, can slow his game down a bit. Most of you will agree that he can’t, and won’t.
What are you expecting tonight? Are you expecting the Sid of old, or a tamed version of his former self? As I said at the outset it’s all in his head. Where is his mind at? Does he trust the medical advice wholeheartedly? How much influence does his family have (who publicly stated they hoped he would have walked away from the game)? Is he able to play a more cautious game? All of these and more will be answered after the first 20 minutes in tonight’s tilt with the Rangers.
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…and that is the last word