67's looking to lay beating on Crosby

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Ottawa Sun

, Last Updated: 8:29 AM ET

The word is out here at the Memorial Cup.

If you want to beat Sidney Crosby and the Oceanic, beat 'em up.

The Knights were very physical with Crosby in their win Saturday, putting gritty winger Brandon Prust on him every chance they got.

Tonight, the 67's get what will be for most of them their first live look at the most exciting junior prospect since Eric Lindros in 1990.

"(Crosby) looked like he tried to play that game with them and it put him off his game," said an NHL scout. "He had a great start, but he pretty much disappeared in the second half of the game. He ran into (Knights defenceman Marc) Methot three times and he didn't look like he had anything left in the tank after that. I think (the Knights) wore him down."

SHUT DOWN BY PRUST

Prust stuck close to Crosby.

"Prustie was on him all night ... Prustie talks a lot, jabs a lot and he goes in-your-face checking," said linemate Drew Larman.

67's coach and GM Brian Kilrea won't have the benefit of last change tonight as Ottawa has been designated the visitors.

The closest thing the 67's have to Prust is Brad Bonello and he's giving up a lot in the size department (three inches and 35 lbs.) to Prust.

Bonello agreed a physical approach is the way to go.

"Once you start looking at the puck or curling away from the puck, he can make you look silly," said Bonello. "You have to play the body and match his speed with him. Try and stay as close as possible to him."

Since the 67's don't have a designated checking line, Kilrea said the priority tonight will be getting the right defencemen on the ice when Crosby is out there. As a group, the 67's blueliners had an awful night against Kelowna on Sunday, so they will have to upgrade their games.

Crosby has been playing right wing since returning from the world juniors, so the 67's left defencemen, starting with Will Colbert, will be on the spot.

"I can't wait. I've seen him on TV and heard about him for two years. I finally got to see him live on Saturday. To get a chance to match up against him (tonight), I'm going to enjoy it. It'll be fun," said Colbert.

"It's a tough task. I'm just going to try and do my best and hopefully I don't wind up minus-5."

"We'll roll four lines and they'll have the opportunity to use him at their leisure," said Kilrea. "You have to know where you can gamble and where you can't and give him the respect he deserves."


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