The two rivals, linked since sharing the same rookie campaign in 2005-06, will face off for the first time this season Wednesday at Washington's newly renamed Capital One Arena.
Each superstar has taken home a mantle full of personal accolades. What really separates them is team accomplishments; there, the Pittsburgh Penguins captain has steadily outpaced Ovechkin and the Washington Capitals.
Here's where the matchup stands heading into Wednesday's contest, their 42nd encounter during the regular season.
It's no surprise that Ovechkin, one of the best pure shooters in decades, leads Crosby here. His 565 career goals are 182 more than Crosby's netted, and put him just outside the top 20 in NHL all-time scoring.
Even when compared on a per-game basis – Ovechkin has played 139 more games than Crosby – the Capitals captain still comes out ahead, besting Crosby 0.61 to 0.49 goals per game.
Head to head, Ovechkin again takes top honors. In their 41 regular-season meetings, Ovechkin has heavily outscored Crosby, coming up with 29 tallies to Crosby's 20.
Much as Ovechkin is the goal-scorer, Crosby is the setup man. He's managed 649 career helpers, nearly 200 ahead of Ovechkin. Crosby's assist total ranks 63rd all time, and he could climb inside the top 50 with a strong 2017-18 season.
On a per-game basis, Crosby is well in front of Ovechkin in this department at 0.83 assists, compared to his fellow superstar's 0.52.
The regular-season matchup isn't remotely close: Crosby has tallied 40 assists, more than double Ovechkin's 18.
Their current head-to-head tally in points is 60 to 57, with the Penguins captain getting the nod. The two players have been nearly evenly matched when facing each other during the regular season, with both producing well above a point per game, but in the end, the slim margin of victory goes to Crosby.
The career numbers are tight as well, with Ovechkin just 10 total points ahead of Crosby. The comparison becomes much more wide-open when reviewing points per game, however – Crosby mightily outpaces Ovechkin, 1.31 to 1.13.
Ovechkin takes the lead in personal accolades. He's got six goal-scoring titles, an Art Ross Trophy as the league's top point producer, three Hart Trophies as the NHL MVP, and even a Calder Trophy from the season he topped Crosby as the league's most outstanding rookie.
But Crosby's collected some hardware of his own. The Penguins center is a two-time Art Ross winner and has two Hart Trophies, plus some other major plaudits – including the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP, an award Crosby's won in each of the past two postseasons.
Where it matters most, Crosby has prevailed: The Penguins have erased the Capitals three times in the postseason during the Crosby and Ovechkin era.
That count includes last spring, when the defending Stanley Cup champions eliminated the reigning Presidents' Trophy winners in their second straight playoff meetup. Both years ended with Crosby hoisting the Stanley Cup – his second and third titles after winning his first NHL championship in 2009.
(Photos courtesy: Action Images)
Copyright © 2017 Score Media Ventures Inc. All rights reserved. Certain content reproduced under license.