Thursday, October 13, 2011

Crosby 24/7

The Rangers and Flyers are being followed around by HBO cameras for the award winning series 24/7, which was such a success in its debut leading up to last year's Winter Classic. Based on one week, it appears Sidney Crosby is getting the star treatment literally.

It's understandable why the game's brightest star would be front and center due to post concussion symptoms that have kept the Penguin captain sidelined since early January. Crosby is a ratings bonanza. So, we get to see every little update on the 24-year old center's condition. Even if status quo as he continues to practice, there's Versus NBC and NHL Network TSN giving a day to day synopsis of Sid The Kid's plight. A few nights ago, there was wonderful new anchor Kathryn Tappen interviewing Mr. Crosby about how this experience has changed him. Granted. It was a good piece. It's just that the continued Sidney stuff is already wavering on insanity.

We get the importance of the former Hart winner. When some of my colleagues in the blogosphere echoed that the game would survive without Crosby, I disagreed from the standpoint that the game couldn't afford to lose a superstar so young. We need him around. Not to become another Kariya or Lindros. Assuming the worst case scenario, of course hockey would go on with or without Sid. But it still would be a crushing blow. Fortunately, over time Crosby's condition has improved to where he's getting close to finally returning. However, you'd think everything stopped the way it's being covered.

Games are being played. In case TSN/NBC haven't noticed, Crosby's teammates are doing just fine without him and banged up Evgeni Malkin. They're being led by Matt Cooke, who at least so far has decided to play hockey instead of cause chaos which forced the NHL to change Rule 48. Cooke, Kris Letang, Marc-Andre Fleury and the rest of the Pens are unbeaten in four games. With Sidney finally cleared for full contact earlier today, the news is encouraging for our preseason pick to come out of the East.

If only the media would chill a bit on every second of Sid's life. Pretty soon, they'll be reporting on what flavor ice cream he had at rival coach Bruce Boudreau's favorite dessert shop, Haagen Dazs. Just imagine.

BREAKING NEWS: Crosby chooses banana walnut fudge on a waffle cone! Cue cheesy music with Kathryn Tappen doing a voice over. "Another busy day with 20 teams in action including the Caps and Pens renewing pleasantries minus Sidney Crosby. Speaking of which, we have an exclusive! A surprise in store for Pens fans. If you like ice cream, you're in for a treat! ..."

I like ice cream as much as anyone but it was never funnier than when Boudreau wanted to get his day started right with a Mall visit cracking, "It's never too early for ice cream." Hopefully, the real 24/7 gives us some of those WTF moments two months from now.

My feeling on Crosby's recovery is that I'll be genuinely excited when he finally declares himself ready to make his season debut. It'll be great for the game regardless of your opinion on Sid. Besides, our games against the Pens wouldn't be the same. Every fan needs a target even if nobody wants to see his career ruined. I liken it to that friend you playfully clown around with. As someone who's usually been the victim, I chuckle.

I know I'm not alone in my opinion here. Crosby 24/7 can get a bit tedious. Even if you love him, when does it become about our teams? I applaud Jeremy Roenick for sounding off recently on NBC/Versus. I half wonder if Sid likes seeing himself on TV so much. Leave the kid alone and let him get ready. A little space never hurt.

We don't want our media morphing into ESPN. Yes. I went there. Do we? Toss as many expletives as you like.

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