The Pittsburgh Penguins and the Oklahoma City Thunder have been at the top of the standings in their respective sports thanks to their co-superstars, Sidney Crosby and Evgeny Malkin from the Pens, and Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook from the Thunder. But what if I told you, that both teams would be better off by keeping only one of them?
Aside from countless personal awards, and years of being atop the standings, these four guys have not had the success when it mattered most. The playoffs. Well other then the one cup the Pens won in 09′, but ever since its been disappointment for the black and yellow. Is it time to move on from the one-two punch?
Crosby and Malkin
Let’s face it, the one-two punch’s glory days are way behind us. Pittsburgh is just not good enough depth-wise to compete in the eastern conference. That’s why I say keep one of them, then trade the other. Here’s why:
When Sidney Crosby was out with a concussion for like two seasons, it was Evgeny Malkin who carried the Pens. He and James Neal absolutely tore up the NHL in 2012, and Malkin had 109 points with 50 goals which gave him the Art Ross, Ted Lindsay, and Hart Trophy. While in the 2013-2014, when Geno only played 60 games that year, it was Crosby who picked up the slack, scoring 104 points, notching 36 goals and 68 assists, also won the Hart, Art Ross and the Ted Lindsay.
One is only good when the other is injured. If one of them were to get traded, it would be Malkin as Crosby has always been the face. Trading Evgeny would get you a million assets to re-tool the Pens, and actually build a hockey team around someone.
Durant and Westbrook
It’s the same story with these two superstars as well. One of them is only better when the other is injured. OKC haven’t had the success that they should be having, but being in a very tough western conference is an excuse for that.
The results prove that one is way better without the other. When Russell Westbrook was still out with arthroscopic knee surgery and the effects from the torn meniscus, it was Kevin Durant who just dominated the NBA, by winning the scoring title and MVP. But the next season, when KD had the nagging foot injuries, Russ also did his part by almost bringing the Thunder to the playoffs but just came a bit short. He did however, win a scoring title.