Nathan MacKinnon has been compared to Sidney Crosby for much of his life. The two grew up in the same Canadian town and both went No. 1 in the NHL draft.
Now they get to take a much closer look at each other.
MacKinnon and the Colorado Avalanche visit Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday night in the first NHL matchup of the pride of Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia.
The Avalanche and Penguins are each off to a 7-1 start, with MacKinnon and Crosby playing a key role. The 26-year-old Crosby has seven goals and 10 assists for a league-best 17 points. MacKinnon, who turned 18 on Sept. 1, has a goal and six assists.
MacKinnon called Crosby the best player in the world and said the center is ''on fire right now.'' But MacKinnon is focused on what he needs to do to help the Avalanche get another win.
''Any time he's out there when you're not on the ice, you sometimes get to enjoy and watch some good players when you're playing against them,'' he said. ''But when you're out there, yo...