SOCHI, Russia (AP) — When Sidney Crosby went through the entire preliminary round of the Olympic men's hockey tournament without scoring a goal, it set off waves of concern back home.
Canadians should know better than anybody that Crosby is more into big Olympic finishes.
"I think you always want more," Crosby said when asked if he was doing enough for Canada. "If you asked me that question a month ago, I'd have said, 'I'd like to create more.' It's the same way now. You always want to generate offense, create chances, and obviously put the puck in the net."
During its two days off before Wednesday's quarterfinal game, the Canadian team reacted with a collective shrug when asked about Crosby's no-goal performance so far in Sochi.
The NHL's top scorer has two assists while playing with a rotating cast of wings, and coach Mike Babcock appears ready to shake it up again Tuesday, perhaps reuniting Crosby with his much-criticized Pittsburgh teammate, Chris Kunitz.
That's normal tinkering in a short tournament, Babcock said. The coach isn't concerned about his star center, and he laughs at anybody who thinks Crosby won't score when the games really count.
"The first line has generated a ton of scoring chances, point-blankers," Babcock said. "They haven't gone in. Do we worry that much about that, or do we just know good players score in the end? Lots of times in the Stanley Cup playoffs, your team goes a ways and your best players have no points in the first round. Someone else picks them up. But by the time it's all over, they're leading the thing in scoring. It's not about that. It's about finding a way to be the best team."
Canada won all three of its preliminary-round games, going to overtime against Finland. The defending Olympic champions finished with the No. 3 seed in the quarterfinals.
Even if Crosby never scores another Olympic goal — an incredibly unlikely scenario — he'll always be beloved in Canada for his gold medal-winning overtime score four years ago. Back at his second Olympics, Crosby is Canada's captain after Scott Niedermayer had the leadership role in Vancouver.
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