Checking the heat of your NHL hot takes on Sidney Crosby, loser points, 'free throws,' Phil Kessel

Hockey fans are an opinionated lot, willing to share our analysis on everything from player performances to big trades to playoff-worthiness of teams.

But we also have those opinions that we're hesitant to share, even if we're convinced of their value or inherent truth. We whisper them at a game or text them to a trusted friend, fearful of the absolute roasting we'd receive were they uttered to the masses.

These are the Hockey Hot Takes.

We recently asked for some of yours, with the intention of assessing their true temperature levels in this week's column. Our thanks to the several dozen readers who shared their spiciest takes. In this edition, we're putting eight of the best to the Hot Take Temperature Test: