Kobe Bryant has been marketed as the NBA’s biggest star for years. Every aspect of his life is magnified by the NBA microscope. Kobe’s every limp, scrape and injury is examined by the NBA writers, cameramen and fans. Sidney Crosby is also pushed as the face of the NHL by Gary Bettman and NHL higher ups. Crosby’s struggle with concussions has brought a heaping helping of scrutiny on him recently.
Miss LeBron? How about Ovechkin?
You either love him or hate him. He’s the star of the league but he always just isn’t good enough to win it all. No. 23, meet Alex Ovechkin. The Washington Capitals superstar tears through the regular season, a scoring machine. But he’s never been able to lead the Caps when it counts most. Sound familiar? If it does, here are a few more NHL stars who could be mistaken for NBA players.
There is no argument that Steve Nash is the beloved leader of the Phoenix Suns. After spending so many years in Phoenix, it seems only right to see Nash running the point. This scrappy veteran seems determined to see the team back to the top of the pile as NBA champions. Jarome Iginla is a true Calgary Flame. As a great captain, he’s been with the team forever and is widely known as a nice guy who’s well respected.
It's a family affair
The brothers Gasol from Barcelona sure aren’t known for their looks. Neither are the Sedin Twins. Mocked for not being tough? Hey, them too!
These guys know the weight of the crown
That lovable workhorse that finally won a championship — team first? That’s Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas in the NHL. The goalie, a Flint, Mich. Native with blue-collar written all over him, backstopped the Bruins to their first title in nearly 40 years. As a new breed of forward the NBA hadn’t yet seen, Nowitzki toiled for years putting up stats with the Dallas Mavericks. If you couldn’t help but cheer for Nowitzki to finally lead the Mavs to the title last year, then Thomas is your go-to hero on the NHL side. Nice guys finally finish first.
Pint sized All-Stars
That little twerp that can’t be stopped despite his size? That sure does look like Martin St. Louis. The Tampa Bay Lightning All-Star is just 5-8. You know Rondo for his speed, carrying the ball and slicing to the hoop, somehow squeaking by every defender? That’s St. Louis at his finest and even faster … on skates.
These dudes make moves ...
Did you see that?! How many times did that come out of your mouth after a dazzling Griffin dunk. Blake creates a buzz at the Clipper games by simply touching the ball. Griffin elevates so effortlessly and dunks with such power, fans can only watch in disbelief. Meet Evgeni “Geno” Malkin. Once in a playoff game Malkin came around the net on his strong side and spun to the other, fooling everyone on the ice including his teammates and, of course, the opposing goalie. Say What? Say Geno, the NHL’s Griffin.
Who's more intimidating?
Ron Artest is as rowdy as they come. He famously charged the stands and initiated the NBA’s most infamous brawl. These days Artest is known for his off-the-wall comments and speaking with no filters. Similarly, there is never a dull moment around Sean Avery. He seems to cause controversy wherever he goes. Avery has had confrontations with NHL players, announcers and fans alike.