As the Penguins took the ice for practice Monday morning, a number of familiar faces were missing. Kris Letang and Zbynek Michalek weren’t present. Neither were Richard Park or Jordan Staal. The most notable omission from practice however, was Sidney Crosby. Crosby sat out the previous two games with concussion type symptoms thanks to multiple hits from the Boston Bruins last Monday. Right as practice began, it was announced that Crosby would address the media after practice was over. Not something that the media or fans wanted to hear.
“Not (feeling) bad. I’m not happy about watching, but I have to make sure with these sort of things that I’m careful and making sure I’m 100 percent before coming back,” Crosby said to a group of reporters huddled around him.
Even though Crosby passed his imPACT test, he said there is no timetable for his return.
Crosby said there are encouraging signs after he did well on the ImPACT test and he feels better than when he previously missed 10 months due to a concussion.
“I did my ImPACT test and it went pretty good,” Crosby said. “That was a good sign. It’s much different than previously going through that stuff. That was encouraging.”
Crosby’s demeanor was nowhere as bleak as it was in January when he first realized he was going to miss time with his concussion.
“I just didn’t feel right,” he said. “I skated the following day after that with a little bit of exertion. I just didn’t feel right. After talking with everyone I figured it was better to be cautious and not take any chances. That’s where I’m at right now.”
Crosby has 12 points (2 goals) in his first eight games back from the initial concussion suffered on Jan. 1 and Jan. 5.
Everyone was waiting for Crosby to return and were holding their breath each time he took a hit. You have to wonder, will Crosby ever be symptom free? The most important part for Crosby is his health, immediate and long-term, then hockey. We heard for the past 10 months the criticism of Crosby for not “manning up” and he was a “wimp” because he wouldn’t play with his symptoms. Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Penguins insider Josh Yohe said that he talked to multiple doctors. They all said that the public is ignorant to the severity of concussions and they applaud Crosby’s honesty. The real fans need to look outside of hockey for a minute and worry about his health.
Many like to point out that football players come back from concussions the next week or even the same game (Colt McCoy last Thursday). What people don’t realize is that concussions affect each person differently and unlike a pulled groin muscle, they can’t be played through. It’s hard for someone who never suffered the injury to realize the actual toll it takes on one’s life. For every Aaron Rodgers and McCoy who returned quickly after concussions, there are the Marc Savard’s, Eric Lindros’s, Paul Kariya’s, Pat Lafontaine’s, Jay Beagle’s and now Sidney Crosby’s who don’t return right away or at all.
For those questioning the “toughness” of Crosby, here is a video you should watch on Preston Plevretes, a former LaSalle University football player who returned too quickly after suffering a concussion. E:60 on ESPN did a profile on Plevretes and it will help give you some insight. Thanks to my good friend Justin Welton for sharing this video ( Preston Plevretes ) .
The Penguins are battling through injuries this year as they did last year and surprisingly have one of the Eastern Conference’s top records again. The Penguins can win without Crosby so there is no need to rush him back. I’d much rather have a healthy Crosby for the next 10 years then the next two weeks and have another injury occur. Take your time Sid and get well soon.
Photo Credits: www.nhlsnipers.com
About the Author
Written by Michael Waterloo
I'm currently pursuing my Master's degree in Communication and Journalism from Clarion University. I currently work for Ohio Valley Athletics where I serve as the West Virginia Football Beat Writer and cover West Virginia Men's Basketball as well. I'm a big Pittsburgh Pirates, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Penguins, Pitt Panthers and Oregon Ducks fan. Follow me on Twitter at @MichaelWaterloo or visit www.ovathletics.com