Crosby Says Has "No Clue" If He'll Be Back This Season
BOCA RATON--Hard to say whether this was news more encouraging for Sidney Crosby, the Pittsburgh Penguins or the NHL.
It's certainly big for all three.
The Penguins captain hit the ice for 15 minutes this morning, the first time since Jan. 5 he has been on skates since suffering one or possibly two concussions in the early days of 2011, starting with the Winter Classic. He has missed 29 games.
The club's web site released the news this morning, saying Crosby skated for about 15 minutes, shot some pucks and skated around cones. He told the Pittsburgh Tribune Review afterwards he has "no clue" if he will be able to return to play this season.
"That's impossible to say," he said. "It's progress. I'm nowhere close (to playing). I just want to get through it (this morning's workout) without getting a headache, let alone worry about my conditioning."
He did say he is feeling better.
"Every day things are pretty good now," he said.
The Penguins, who are without both Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, should be enormously encouraged by even the possibility that their captain could return this season.
For the NHL, after an awful week for the Bettman administration in which the league was lambasted in public and the media for its handling of the violent Zdeno Chara hit on Max Pacioretty and another player, Pavel Kubina, was suspended for a head shot violation, this was good news indeed. If anything, the absence of Crosby has added a quiet, sombre undertone to the entire season, particularly since he was the league's leading scorer at the time of his injury.
His absence put into sharp relief the NHL's ongoing problems with concussions, and the GM meetings that began this morning here in Florida are expected to include a great deal of discussion on both concussion protocols and possible rule changes. The league announced a five-pronged program to attack the concussion problem on Monday, and Crosby said he's watching what these meetings produce.
"I think everyone is interested," he said. "There's been talk about rule changes. We'll see what happens," he said.
Crosby was asked if he thinks all head shots should be banned.
"That’s a great question. I’d like to say yes," he said. "But it’s more than just saying that. There’s obviously got to be some clairity. Everything’s got to be looked at. It’s a pretty fast game. There may be times when guys maybe don’t (aim) for the head but come into contact with the head. What do you do in that situation?"