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With the premier of HBO’s 24/7 Penguins/Capitals: Road to the NHL Winter Classic, it appears that mainstream media has admitted that hockey does indeed exist.  How about that.

The series follows the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals as a lead up to the Winter Classic in January.  The series is speculated to be similar to HBO’s Hard Knocks, which follows an NFL team as it prepares for the season.  The decision to make the series this season was a no-brainer, as the Penguins and Capitals feature the NHL’s two most marketable players in Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin respectably.  Over the past few seasons, the two players have created a huge rivalry between both themselves and the two teams, with numerous epic on ice battles, and a great deal of trash talk going back and forth.  The two teams met in a thrilling 2009 Easter Conference Semi-Finals, with the Penguins winning in 7 games, and the individual rivalry was at its highest level in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, when Crosby’s Canada defeated Ovechkin’s Russia, 7-3 in the quarterfinal round.

The difference in styles between the players, and captains of their respective teams is the biggest aspect of making the rivalry what it is.  Crosby has developed into a superstar through his world class passing, and leadership, while Ovechkin is known for his cannon of a shot, and emotions on the ice.  Despite the players strengths, they have not been without criticism however.  Crosby is frequently accused of cheap shots and diving, while Ovechkin attitude and dirty play have been called into question.  This is what adds to the nature of the game, however.  In order to have a draw in the television market, the NHL needs something interesting to draw the fans in, other than just good hockey.  Crosby and Ovechkin, are two players that people, including myself, love to hate.  And because of this I will be sure to watch this show.

For a Preview, Click Here:


Written by ZDooley

December 20, 2010 at 6:42 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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