Well, he’s not a finalist for the Selke Trophy as the best two-way forward in the NHL, but Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby has been recognized by his peers as one of the most complete players.
Crosby and Boston’s Patrice Bergeron, practically a Selke regular, tied atop the complete player category in the NHL Players Association annual poll of players, released Thursday. Crosby and Bergeron each received 23.78 percent of the vote, or 112 votes each.
The annual survey’s findings might be of heightened interest because it reflects the opinions of the players themselves. The NHLPA says that 490 players answered poll questions covering a variety of topics. The questions were posed between March and April in the regular season.
Crosby (23.04 percent) was second in response to the question: If you need to win one game, who is the one player (any position) you would want on your team? Edmonton star Connor McDavid finished first with 36.74 percent of the votes. Crosby won this category last season.
Crosby finished sixth in the category of best passer, with 4.23 percent of the votes. Nicklas Backstrom of Washington won that category.
In the more fun, off-ice categories, Crosby won big for most superstitious with 27.35 percent of the vote, well ahead of No. 2 Michael Frolik of Montreal (5.09 percent). Crosby’s quirks have been heavily documented over the years.
Crosby earlier was recognized by his brethren when he was named a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award, which goes to the NHL’s Most Outstanding Player, as determined by a vote of players.
Penguins defenseman Kris Letang finished fifth (4.53 percent) in the NHLPA poll category of most fashionable. While he’s a smart dresser, surely the hair helped him here. Toronto’s Auston Matthews finished first.
No other Penguins finished in the published results, which can be found here.
Other player winners:
The best goal scorer: Auston Matthews, Toronto
The best defenseman: Victor Hedman, Tampa Bay
The best goaltender: Andrei Vasilevskiy, Tampa Bay (former Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, of Vegas, was second)
The best shot: Alex Ovechkin, Washington
The best stick-handler: Patrick Kane, Chicago
The most unique tape job: David Pastrnak of Boston
The best team retro reverse jersey: Colorado Avalanche
There also were two yes/no questions based on changes that were adopted for this COVID-19 altered season.
Asked if they would like to see regional divisions carried forward, 68.2 percent said yes.
Asked if they would like to see a series-style scheduled carried forward, 66.30 percent said yes.