Since they came into the league the debate between who would you rather have for a franchise player between Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin has been extremely tough to call. Both display the talent and skill to control the game by themselves. They both show great heart and determination on the ice and make everyone around them better. Although they play very different styles both are on par with one another in terms of what they can bring on the ice in terms of stats. So the real debate starts between the two when you look at overall team morale, and leadership abilities. When we start looking at it from this approach it almost seems certain that Sidney Crosby is the hands down choice because he brings that North American, even Canadian approach to leadership into the locker room that many people rate so highly. Having a Canadian Captain in many peoples eyes means a better chance at the Stanley Cup the goal of each team. So Crosby should be the hands down favorite, but I just can't choose him.
There is something about Alexander Ovechkin that makes you have to love him. His love to play. The fact that he does EVERYTHING on the ice, and he loves every second of it. Every goal he scores is like he is a kid scoring his very first. I don't think there is another player like him in the NHL. His energy and his passion can be rivaled by very few. Locker room wise he does not come close to bringing the same type of leadership skills to the team as Crosby, but on the ice there is no one like him. When you see what he is doing, and you see the pure join on his face it reverberates back onto the entire team making them all remember that hockey is a game, an incredibly fun game, ant that the reason they play is because they love to play. This feeling raises the team and can spark excitement into them giving them just as much life as a locker room speech can. The only difference is that this lasts and is on display each and every period on the ice instead of in the locker room.
Although it is very difficult to choose between the two, my choice has to be Alex Ovechkin. If I was a GM or owner of an NHL club he would be my guy. He brings excitement to the game. And hockey to him is not all business on the ice, it's what it is suppose to be. Its a fun challenging game. And it is hard for the fans not to love that. And while it is against what most statistics and peoples opinions about Canadian boys being the ticket to the cup, Alex makes me believe there is a changing of the guard a little in the NHL and that you can win by going against the grain and playing for the love of the game. I would much rather see Ovechkin win the cup than Crosby also because if he gets as excited as he does when he scores a goal, it will an amazing thing to see him when he lifts the Cup.