First of all, I laughed out loud at the “he doesn’t stay down like that unless he has to,” line during the highlight before the announcers even saw the play. Sure Sid’s taken some shots over the years, but guess what? So has every single player in the NHL. To say Crosby doesn’t ever stay down, or sell a call, is absurd. No one has mastered the LeBron flop like Sidney Crosby has.

That being said I thought this was a bang-bang play. I actually disliked the high slash by Alex Ovechkin that set the whole thing in motion more than the finish by Matt Niskanen. Ovechkin had a choice and still swung for the fences. Niskanen had no choice. He was caught on the tracks as the train came through. His hands weren’t high, rather at chest level, as Crosby fell down into him. Just like when anyone falls into you, or if you’re falling to the ground, most people instinctively put out their hands. That’s exactly what Niskanen did.

But people are going to see what they want to see when Sid’s involved because it’s a situation he and the league have created themselves. Anti-Crosby people have a hard time giving Crosby the benefit of the doubt on a lot of hits he takes because he’s protected by the NHL. His blind followers ignore that he’s also immune from the shots he gives. He has his own rulebook. Which is why when you watch the play at full speed Niskanen getting tossed from the game for putting his hands out instinctively from someone falling into him is Crosby Rulebook 101 stuff. Because there is no chance in a cold hell that Crosby would get tossed on that same play if he were in Niskanen’s shoes. Give him 2 for a crosscheck, sure, but that’s it. At least the NHL announcing this morning that Niskanen would avoid a suspension was a nice make up gesture for wrongly tossing him last night.

Crosby Rules are all tied in to how terrible officiating has become in the NHL in general. Refs continue down the puppeted path the suits drive them on which is why Ovi avoided time for his Paul Bunyan chop that created that mess last night. 

As for Sid, I do hope he’s okay. That is not a joke. But I’m also comfortable putting a few of my paychecks on him playing like his usual great self in Game 4. He’ll be deemed a hero back in Pittsburgh upon his return and we can all go back to living in his little world just the way the NHL wants us to because the likable guy deserves our thoughts and prayers after last night:

Follow us on @BostonPucks and let’s talk hockey.