Tom Wilson shares his true feelings on rival Sidney Crosby.
Nick Wass/AP  

Tom Wilson shares his true feelings on rival Sidney Crosby.

The Washington Capitals enforcer was asked about his team's biggest rival and he did not hold back.

Jonathan Larivee

Over the course of the last several years the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins have boasted one of the fiercest rivalries in the National Hockey League. The two teams have clashed time and time again, both in the regular season and in the Stanley Cup playoffs, and unsurprisingly in a sport as competitive as hockey that has led to some animosity between the two sides.

Recently, Capitals enforcer Tom Wilson was a guest on TSN 1050 radio and he was asked about that rivalry, and more specifically about the lynchpin of that rivalry from the Penguins' side of things, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby. Wilson did not hold back in his response and appeared to have a genuine admiration and respect for the Penguins star forward when answering a variety of questions about him.

Wilson was first asked about how Crosby stacked up against Capitals star forward Alex Ovechkin when it came to trash talk on the ice.

"I'd say they are much different," admitted Wilson on TSN 1050. "You never know what Ovi is gonna come up with. Sid is pretty quiet out there for the most part. Every once in a while he will get fired up, but he sticks to his game and he's not too vocal."

Wilson was also asked about Crosby's reputation as something of a 'sneaky-dirty' player on the ice, a notion that Wilson himself largely shut down.

"I think every hockey player has a trick or two up their sleeve to defend themselves or to be a guy to go out and play with some sandpaper, that's just kinda how we are. He's had a big target on his back for a long time so I'm sure he has to do some stuff to create space."

His true feelings about Crosby really shined through however when he heaped a ton of praise on the Penguins captain, commenting on how classy of a player #87 has been throughout the rivalry despite the repeated clashes between the two teams.

"He's an all-time great player in the game, and for how many times we have played each other and gone back and forth in that rivalry we haven't had too many run ins. He's always been pretty classy, a respected player, at least from my perspective."