Both players have been instrumental in helping the NHL grow, but the success of the Penguins and of Team Canada has forced Crosby to do more of the heavy lifting as a spokesman."I feel like he is well thought-out and he has a good care level for the game and the fans," said Nashville Predators general manager David Poile.No one at the NHL office has to worry about Crosby making a misstep on Twitter because to him, that form of social media is a one-way street.The two-time MVP and Stanley Cup winner reached 1,000 points in 757 games. Malkin also scored for Pittsburgh, while Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 44 shots for the Penguins, who improved to 6-0-2 since the All-Star break. Paul Postma collected his first and Dustin Byfuglien his eighth for the Jets.Connor Hellebuyck made 35 saves, but couldn't get a handle on Crosby's 31st of the season and 369th goal of his career.The Pens captain is up to six goals and 11 assists this postseason.The best-of-seven series is now tied up at two with the series shifting back to Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh was already down 5-0 when Crosby scored early in the third period.Washington coach Barry Trotz called it "the right decision" while stressing the cross-check was "a hockey play." Fleury said the Penguins can't get caught up in trying to retaliate, though Washington expects Pittsburgh to ramp up the physical play going forward. Malkin won the Hart Trophy in 2012, the same season in which Crosby was limited to just 22 games.
He has been voted MVP twice by writers and three times by players.He has been the player that scouts expected him to be, and the ambassador that the NHL needed him to be.Crosby delivers on the ice and does as many interviews and appearances as a league has a right to expect."I don't think it is possible to do more for a league than Sid has done," said Pittsburgh Penguins President David Morehouse.Crosby arrived in the NHL right after the canceled 2004-05 season.Washington Capitals winger Alex Ovechkin and Crosby were third and sixth in the scoring race that first season, and it was clear they could do for the NHL what Larry Bird and Magic Johnson did for the NBA.For goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, Crosby's nomadic two-year recovery from a concussion sustained after taking a shoulder to the head by Capitals forward David Steckel in 2011 remains fresh. "We're very optimistic and we're hopeful that we'll get him back in a timely fashion." Just not in time to try and help the Penguins build on the 2-1 lead they take into Game 4 ( p.m. Sullivan declined to speculate on Crosby's availability beyond Game 4. He missed the second half of the 2010-11 season and most of 2011-12 following the hit by Steckel.