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Crosby asked Toews if he was okay with him being named captain

Jan 23, 2014, 9:50 AM EDT

Oct 17, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby (87) celebrates his goal against the Philadelphia Flyers during the third period at Wells Fargo Center. The Penguins defeated the Flyers, 4-1. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports Reuters

Jonathan Toews wasn’t shy about the fact that he felt he was up to the task of captaining Team Canada in the 2014 Winter Olympics. Still, it came as no surprise when Sidney Crosby was picked for the job.

Toews was selected as an alternative, but before that happened, Crosby reached out to Toews to make sure he was okay with the decision.

“(Toews’) held in high regard, to say the least, and he’s a huge part of the reason why (the Blackhawks) win as much as they do,” Team Canada coach Mike Babcock said, according to CSN Chicago.

Toews felt Crosby’s gesture was nice, but unnecessary. The fact that he won’t wear the ‘C’ hasn’t dampened his enthusiasm to be able to play for Team Canada in the first place.

The Blackhawks captain has won the Stanley Cup twice, which is part of the reason why Babcock feels Toews has earned the right to serve as the nation’s captain. Even still, Crosby is the team’s best player and was the hero in Canada’s gold medal match against the United States in 2010.

  1. atwatercrushesokoye - Jan 23, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    I’m not a Crosby fan in any way but I respect that he did this, I think it’s a class move.

    • ethanmacleod1685 - Jan 23, 2014 at 9:55 AM

      Only hockey players do this

      • ethanmacleod1685 - Jan 23, 2014 at 9:55 AM

        They set the standard for sportsmanship unlike thuggish idiots like Richard Sherman

    • idonthavethebloodyoucrave - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:22 AM

      Actually, Sherman’s story panned out. I’m sure there was jarring between them throughout the game. However, if you watch the SoundFX on NFL Network from the game last Sunday. He actually did go over to Crabtree and offer to shake his hand and say good game and then was punched in the face. Crabtree got embarrassed on the play and after watching the SoundFX, I don’t feel sorry for him one bit for getting embarrassed after the play.

      • dt58 - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:18 PM

        Is that the same play that Sherman got an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on? Ya, that pat on the butt and “hand shake” looked really sincere, even more so after hearing him spout off his nonsense after the game. I really don’t see much of a difference between Shermans actions/response and Marchand “kissing his ring and hoisting the cup” in Vancouver a while back. Personally, I always thought Barry Sanders had the best “celebrations” ever. He’d crack off a high lite reel run and after just lob the ball to the ref and go and sit on the bench. Call me old fashioned but I’m not into the excess goal celebrations either (ie Yakopov), these guys are professionals… act like it. Nothing wrong with getting excited and celebrating but at least pretend that it’s not your first and won’t be your last.

      • pfhockey - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:14 PM

        Sherman did not mean well in that action. He was rubbing it in.

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 11:28 AM

      Many can hate on Crosby for whatever reasons, but the kid has been nothing but class. His sister was trying out for the women’s Olympic team last winter, and during the lockout Crosby took the opportunity to go see her play. There was a long line up of kids who wanted his autograph, and he made sure to sign for everyone.

    • nj666 - Jan 23, 2014 at 11:38 AM

      Crosby isn’t a bad guy, he had reached out to help ryane clowe during his concussion issues. not to mention crosby is a fun player to watch when he is in his game.

    • seniorteacherdot - Jan 24, 2014 at 4:12 PM

      Crosby came to NHL as Sid the Kid and Mario took him under his wing. Mario is another class act who helped to keep Crosby in the right groove. Crpsbu handles all the media circus very well. Crosby lived under Mario’s roof (he has quite a mansion) until last year when he bought his own place (haven’t seen photes of Crosby’s place yet). A really class act all around.

      • seniorteacherdot - Jan 24, 2014 at 4:13 PM

        Sorry about that Crpsbu type–I guess you realize I meant Crosby.

  2. miketoasty - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:02 AM

    The two best captains in the NHL playing for the same team, a difficult choice to pick one out of the two. A classy move by Crosby and an even classier move by Toews to admit it was unnecessary. Both these guys just want to win, period.

    • kaptaanamerica - Jan 23, 2014 at 2:06 PM

      Toes isn’t one of the top two captains in the league…

      • imleftcoast - Jan 23, 2014 at 2:58 PM

        Two Stanley Cup rings say otherwise.

  3. sjsharks66 - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:04 AM

    Classy move by Crosby.

  4. lowenni - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:05 AM

    Unnecessary, but very classy move from a guy who gets a lot of unfounded criticism.

    • buysamadrink - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:10 AM

      Well stated. Couldn’t agree more.

  5. dadawg77 - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:29 AM

    Comparing how two teammates relate to how opponents relate is a bit of a stretch. I’m thinking you are hurting from Sherman’s asking why no one calls John Scott a thug while all Sherman did was yell in an interview.

    • nj666 - Jan 23, 2014 at 11:40 AM

  6. valoisvipers - Jan 23, 2014 at 11:19 AM

    I think Crosby better fills the business side of captaincy than Toews after all Crosby is the “Face of the NHL”.

    • blackhawkboy1 - Jan 23, 2014 at 1:21 PM

      actually I think you have that backwards. The captaincy aspect is filled better by “Captain Serious.” Crosby is a good player, no question, but Toews is often considered to be the best Captain because of his behind the scenes work. I am a bit surprised, but it is what it is.

      • steelpenbucs87 - Jan 23, 2014 at 2:36 PM

        Crosby has always been lauded for his leadership on the ice – coaching up teammates, sharing insights, encouraging players. In the locker room he’s not the ra-ra guy however. From my understanding Toews is similar in those regards. Don’t think you can go wrong with either.

    • odoliodoli - Jan 23, 2014 at 1:38 PM

      …while Toews is the “Heart of the NHL.” Your choice shows a little bit into your sports soul.

  7. kingcobraman - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    Canada is truly blessed with two great leaders….

  8. dt58 - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    Very classy on both sides. Also, I think that it’ll help accelerate the team chemistry/unity. When 2 of the best are willing to put egos aside for the good of the team I think it’ll resonate with the rest of the team that this about gold, not personal accolades or padding their resume. It’s definitely the right attitude to go into the tourney with IMO

  9. muckleflugga - Jan 23, 2014 at 1:02 PM

    wow…profound

  10. cofran2004 - Jan 23, 2014 at 1:20 PM

    I dislike crosby, and I like Toews. That said… I go with crosby as my captain every time. Not really much of a question.

  11. muckleflugga - Jan 23, 2014 at 1:48 PM

    i see haley wickenheiser is canada’s flag bearer at sochi

    apparently the canadian olympic committee missed the sidney crosby love fest…the circle jerk…the memo

    regardless, toews would have been the better choice to captain the mens’ team

    politicking is the downfall of any medal hope on this team

    • steelpenbucs87 - Jan 23, 2014 at 2:39 PM

      Orrrrr it was because the Pens have a game the day of Opening Ceremonies….. but don’t let that get in the way of your little narrative.

      • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:01 PM

        Hold on! steelpenbucs87! Had Crosby been chosen he would have been given the opportunity to decline, or accepted with the permission of the Pens. Didn’t you hear that Chara was offered to carry the flag?

        “The Olympic opening ceremony will be held Feb. 7, six days before Slovakia plays its first game against the United States. Bruins coach Claude Julien confirmed Thursday that Chara has been granted permission to leave the team and miss Boston’s final game before the Olympic break, Feb. 8 against the Ottawa Senators.”

      • steelpenbucs87 - Jan 23, 2014 at 7:13 PM

        I was not aware of that – interesting. With that being said, I think that he (as well as Chara) should fulfill their obligations to the team that is paying them millions of dollars. With that being said if Chara wants to and if the Bruins are cool with it then everyone is happy I suppose.

  12. muckleflugga - Jan 23, 2014 at 3:11 PM

    steelpenbucs87

    i see bruins have a game on the sixth and eighth of february … chara is slovakia’s flag-bearer …

    were pavel datsyuk named russian flag-bearer in addition to being named captain of its mens’ team, his right to carry the flag would be permitted by wings without question, injury notwithstanding

    why not sid…?

    maybe it’s because hayley brings a silver and three golds to the table … she was winning at the olympics when sid was starting junior high … she’s a true canadian hockey hero … pure class

    i understand those penguins fans who cream themselves at any mention of sidney crosby, suffer under the misapprehension he’s the face of hockey in canada … not true

    outside of the honey-dripping man love from cbc and tsn, starved for anything truly dynamic in canadian hockey since guy lafleur, wayne gretzky and steve yzerman, most canadians have regional interests across a massive and varied cultural landscape … trust me, fans in quebec appreciate sid as a player, but he’s no icon

    what happens in pittsburgh is of little interest outside of pennsylvania … to much whining … too many turtles

    in a practical sense, gordie howe is the true face of hockey in canada … hard as nails … a man who owned the ice every time he laced them up … no nights off or temperamental simpering … a man

    sidney wouldn’t have lasted five minutes in those games … he’d have peed himself then gone home to mario where they could cry together … the perfect match

  13. matthews4 - Jan 23, 2014 at 3:25 PM

    Wow, will the Crosby blind love ever end? He is not a good captain, based on his behavior in his LAST two playoff runs. Total and complete meltdowns. It’s not my country so i don’t have a dog in this fight, but people come on. I mean really he is always classy? How many NHL players and coaches have to complain, about his lack of class before people stop this blind loyalty. He is by far the most talented hockey player in the world, that does not make you the best Captain in such a distinguished group. Be honest here Canada fill in the blank for me Crosby or Bergeron or Toews. best exemplifies what being a Captain should be. It’s not about skill, it’s about character. It’s not even close.

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:28 PM

      You’re absolutely right! He is such a terrible choice. Pens should disregard everything he’s done for the organization and just focus on a terrible run in the playoffs. Which BTW he finished 4 points behind second place Kane who won the MVP, and 1 point ahead of Toews, and having played 9 games less than these 2 players.

      Go play with your GI Joe.

      • dt58 - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:45 PM

        You know, whether I agree with your opinions or not, you are very knowledgeable and can be quite insightful. I do have to say though, you come off as a hypocrite with the ” Did you ever notice how the less knowledgeable a commenter is about the game, the more he resorts to insignificant name calling? Ex: “whiny snot-bag” Oh! Wait! That was you! You just proved my point.” and then you follow that with “go play with your G.I.Joe”.

        If you don’t want people “name calling”, try not to resort to it yourself. Practice what you preach dude

      • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:58 PM

        dt58, Amen!

        Sincerely,

        The hypocrite!

        PS I didn’t call him names. I simply gauged him to be a young adolescent. Actually, I was going to use “Lite Brite”, but then decided it would make me look what I am… too old. Then I thought about using “Legos” and thought that would insult him. Maybe GI Joe wasn’t the best choice. Do you think GI Jane would have been more appropriate? Or perhaps something more gender neutral like GI Pat?

        BTW, I think there was a complement in there somewhere. Thanks!

        Cheers!

    • dcprospect - Jan 24, 2014 at 5:51 AM

      Completely wrong here. The only people that whine about Crosby are John Tortorella and Mike Milbury, and both of those people are clowns. You actually have no idea what kind of character Toews, Crosby or Bergeron have, because you dont know them. Guess who does? Babcock and Yzerman. They are the ones in charge of making decisions for the Canadian Olympic team and have coached them. They ACTUALLY know what kind of players and leaders they are. They went with Crosby. Could have gone either way. Most Canadians are good with that choice. When will people understand that they just watch these people on tv and have no idea what they’re talking about when it comes to what they’re like in real life? Sad.

  14. jbink2585 - Jan 23, 2014 at 3:41 PM

    As a Flyers fan obvious not the hugest Fan of Sid the Kid, but must say extremely Classy sportsman things to do, well played gesture.

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:32 PM

      You can’t even say he’s the best player in the world and appreciate his talent. But! You sure as hell can try to tell us Coburn is a #2 d man. BTW, he was on the ice for 2 goals vs the Canes. But! That means nothing to you because you’re a Flyers fan and Coburn and the terrible d can do no wrong. Right?

      • jbink2585 - Jan 23, 2014 at 6:20 PM

        JOEY4id–THE CLOSET PENS FAN WHO HATES ON THE FLYERS AT EVERY OPPORTUNITY.THE MAN WHO DOES IS EVALUATIONS SOLEY BASED OFF +/- and PLAYSTATION 3. LETANG IS A -7 DOES HE SUCK ALSO BUD, COBURN -4. I also suggest you take a reading class because here is what I said @JOEY4id– You are so clueless pal I will absolutely stand by my statement which is this: Kimmo with his age is prb a 3
        Mez is a 4
        Grossman is solid 3, but could def be on 1st pair with an elite dman
        Coburn is a 2.5(Def not slow not sure what tape you watch.)
        Streit prb between 2 and 3 also solid Off def scares me lean more toward 3
        Schenn if you look up trainwreck you see his picture prb between a 4-5 dman, but def serviceable for last pairing at around12-14 mins /game. So again where did I say they do no wrong, where did I say Coby was a 2. In the end you are typical hater, who is unable to give an unbias evaluation, bc you don’t know the game and you still wear a Penguins onesy to bed. Also why would I need to mention Crosby is the best Player in the world when the article is about Calling toews to see if he was ok with him being Captain? How does sid talent belong in this conversation.#MENTAL MIDGET

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 7:03 PM

      Letang does suck big time. He’s not slow, but man does he know how to cough up the puck. The guy has been horrendous. The only reason I haven’t mentioned that fact is because no one has tried to sell us the idea that he’s been playing like a #2 or 3.

      Philly
      5 on 5 Goals For/Against Ratio – 26th
      Goals Against Per Game – 18th
      Power Play % – 18th
      Shots Against Per Game – 17th

      I got this info from my playstation. Quality of the forwards for Philly, minus the 4th line is very good. They definitely need to improve on D. Niskanen is a UFA agent next year, but you may not like him. He’s the league leader at +26, and this despite all the injuries.

      • jbink2585 - Jan 23, 2014 at 7:21 PM

        I here you and if I come across as ignorant truly apologize, just seems like you have attacked me and labeled me a ignorant biased homer who sees my d core as the iron wall and a Stanley Cup contending team, which if you see my post is far from truth. The flyers have offensive potential, but are totally lacking a stud #1 dman and solid 2 dman, and a proven goal scorer away from being viable contender. I just don’t see the point of you coming here post every flyers game to reiterate our defensive shortcomings when any knowledgeable Flyers fans knows this teams shortcomings. They have played better hockey under chief but still are ways away from the caliber of the Likes of Ducks hawks pens etc

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 7:33 PM

      Gotcha! I really am not a Pens fan. I’m really more a fan of the game, and try to look at the game without the emotional attachment of a fan rooting for his team. It provides for more objectivity. In Nov. I wrote here that the Rangers would finish ahead of the Flyers, and the Flyers wouldn’t make make the playoffs because of the slow the points they lost at the start of the season. I am very impressed with their push current record. There has never been a lack of heart in the Flyers locker room, and for that and guys like Couturier, Giroux, Shenn, Read, Simmonds, etc… they remain one of my favorite teams to watch.

      • jbink2585 - Jan 23, 2014 at 7:40 PM

        Yes they def have some nice pieces, but until the Blueline is squared away this team will lack to be a serious contender. Anytime the puck is in our end you just hold your breath. I remeber when we signed that offer sheet to Weber and that was truly what this team needed and when the preds matched it was a true blow, and pronger LTIR and career being over our Blueline is a work in progress, with no help in sight anytime soon, all our picks are at least a couple year away from making a jump

  15. amityvillefun - Jan 23, 2014 at 3:47 PM

    Crosby is NOT a better captain than Toews. He led his team to a disappointing sweep in the conference finals (nice job there Sid) and is ridiculed for being “cowardly” and a “whiner.” Those are not traits one looks for in a leader!

    Toews and Bergeron are far better candidates for this position but the NHL poster boy wins again. Does Crosby keep his knee pads on off hours?

    If Canada wants to be led by a whiny snot-bag that allows himself and his team to be bullied and pushed around, well, they picked the right guy!

    Toews is a far more rugged player and more deserving of this honor. Crosby may wear the “C,” but I’ll bet Toews and Bergeron do most of the leading on ice and in the locker room.

    • joey4id - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:10 PM

      You’re absolutely right about his performance being bellow bar in the the CF. However, he does have a SC, and the book shouldn’t be closed on him yet. That said, I was expecting Toews to be selected, but its not a huge surprised that they went with 87.

      Did you ever notice how the less knowledgeable a commenter is about the game, the more he resorts to insignificant name calling? Ex: “whiny snot-bag” Oh! Wait! That was you! You just proved my point. Now move along young man..

    • dcprospect - Jan 24, 2014 at 5:31 AM

      @amityville
      Your entire post is completely ignorant. Crosby hasn’t “whined” since his rookie season. Both Toews and Crosby are great leaders according to their respective teammates (you know, the people they actually lead). Also, Crosby is the only NHL player to win the Mark Messier Leadership Award twice (not to mention the only one on the current Canadian Olympic team that has won it). It’s “an award that recognizes an individual as a superior leader within their sport.” But still, the truth of the matter is neither of us actually know what kind of leaders Toews or Crosby are, because we havent witnessed it first hand. Since “leadership” is a subjective term, I trust the opinion of the people (Babcock & Yzerman) who are in charge and have coached both of them, and know what kind of players and leaders they are. It would be smart of you to do the same. It’ll give you more time to day-dream about how rugged your man Toews is.

  16. dt58 - Jan 23, 2014 at 5:05 PM

    @Joey. There absolutely was a complement there. All I was saying is that it takes away from a (usually) well thought out comment.

  17. kastout11 - Jan 24, 2014 at 7:47 AM

    Being a Flyers fan, I cannot in good conscious like Crosby. That being said, he is unquestionably the best player in the world, and should witout question be the captain for Team Canada. The fact that he asked Toews speaks volumes to the class the guy has. Damn, I wish he was not on the Penguins.

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