It just might be the biggest individual rivalry in NHL history. And it’s every bit as relevant today as it was nine years ago, when Sidney Crosby was drafted No. 1 overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins – one year after the Washington Capitals did the same with Alex Ovechkin. These two supremely gifted players will reunite for the latest NBCSN Wednesday Night Rivalry game (8:00 PM ET) in DC.
Crosby (19 goals, 42 assists) got the upper hand last year by claiming his second Hart Trophy as the league’s MVP, but Ovechkin (38 goals, 23 assists) could easily win the Hart for the fourth time. He leads the NHL in scoring as we go to press. In the meantime, the Penguins (34-17-9, 27-33 ATS for plus-3.21 units) have a very slim lead over the Capitals (33-18-10, 29-32 ATS for plus-6.44 units) in the Metropolitan standings.
That lead might not hold up. Washington has won all three of its games against Pittsburgh this year, including last week’s 3-1 victory over the Penguins (–149) in their own building. The other two wins were by a combined score of 7-0; Ovechkin has three goals thus far and Crosby has none.