With Crosby Out, Malkin Must Shine

The NHL’s reigning scoring champion, Sidney Crosby, is expected to miss 6-8 weeks after suffering a high ankle sprain during Friday’s contest with the Tampa Bay Lightning.

This does not come as good news, considering the Penguins had won 10 of their last 11 prior to Crosby’s injury.

As they say, though, the show must go on — even if the face of the NHL is on the injured reserve list.

This means that young, Evgeni Malkin — who has an impressive 56 points — will have to step up to the plate.

Though it doesn’t mean the 21-year-old must carry the team all by himself, he will undoubtedly have to do his best Sidney Crosby impression over next month and a half.

In doing so, it is crucial that Malkin do as Crosby did by making those around him better.

He must assume the role of leader by cultivating an identity comprised of unparalelled confidence, intelligence, and the presence of mind to make the right decisions.

If Evgeni Malkin succeeds in keeping the Penguins above water in the oh-so heated Atlantic Division, he will have put his team in great shape for Crosby’s return.

But more importantly, he will have proven to himself — and to those around him — that he is much more capable than just playing Garfunkel to Crosby’s Simon.

Who knows, he might even have a band of his own one day.

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