Sid the Kid takes time to take it all in

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:52 AM ET

Sidney Crosby sat back and took a deep breath.

The most-anticipated rookie season in NHL history had just ended, and Sid the Kid was giving himself a moment to take it all in.

The whirlwind ride finally was over and hockey's most-celebrated teenager finally had time to reflect on his 102-point campaign.

His birth certificate might read 18, but he admitted feeling a little older. And wiser.

"We went through a lot this season and I can't tell you how much I learned," he said. "It'll be something I'll really appreciate down the road."

With his family on hand last night, Crosby scored his first career goal against the Maple Leafs in a 5-3 loss.

"As Montreal fans we always watched those Canadiens-Leafs games so it was great to get one against Toronto," he said.

Crosby became the youngest player to record 100 points in a season when he assisted on a Ryan Malone goal against the New York Islanders at the Igloo on Monday. His dad, Troy, was the only family member at that game.

"It's a great accomplishment,"Crosby said of surpassing the century mark in points.

"It has been a tough year but I didn't want it to affect the way I played. You don't always want to gauge a season by points."

After getting credit for his historic helper on Malone's goal against the Islanders, Crosby asked for the sticks of Malone and John LeClair, who also drew an assist on the play.

He also has the puck, although he's not quite certain what he's going to do with all the mementoes.

"I think when I had 80 points and there were 10 games left, I told myself that I was going to play as hard as I could right to the end," Crosby said. "I wanted to finish strong and have no regrets.

"This year has gone by so fast. It feels like it only has been half a season."

While the season officially ended for both the Leafs and Pens last night, Crosby will be representing Team Canada at the world hockey championship in Latvia next month.

After missing out on a berth on the Canadian Olympic team earlier this year, Crosby welcomes the challenge.

"It took me a day to get over the Olympic thing because I came so close," he said. "After that, I watched all their games as a fan.

"I'm looking forward for this chance to play for Canada."


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