Washington Capitals coach Adam Oates must know that many believe Sidney Crosby should have won the 2013 Hart Trophy instead of Alex Ovechkin. His response to the Canadian Press’ Stephen Whyno is sure to raise a few eyebrows.
“[Sidney Crosby] is an MVP in this league. He is,” Oates said. “But in saying that, he also didn’t have an MVP season.”
This isn’t the first time an admittedly biased Oates gave his 27-year-old star the edge over his prominent rival, as he made a similar point about the time Crosby missed when asked in mid-April.
Crosby, 25, was predictably diplomatic about the injury factor.
“I was in the mix,” Crosby said. “Alex had a great second half there and I ended up getting hurt and missing some time.”
Capitals GM George McPhee backed up the perceived need to play close to a full season to get the Hart, noting that Ovechkin fought through injuries of his own.
“Durability is part of being a great player,” McPhee said.
If nothing else, this debate might help to reignite a rivalry that seemingly went a little dormant the last couple seasons.