Let’s see. So much to look for at the Pittsburgh Penguins practice Saturday. Where to start? How about this: Sidney Crosby was on the ice, and he was not wearing a non-contact jersey.
Crosby, according to coach Mike Sullivan, skated separately from the team Friday morning. He did not play Friday in a Game 6 loss against the New York Rangers after leaving Game 5 following a high hit by New York’s Jacob Trouba.
Although the practice was optional with 15 players participating, Crosby’s presence suggests he might be available for Game 7 Sunday in New York. Sullivan did not confirm whether Crosby has been cleared to take contact — and there was not a lot of that happening in an optional practice — but he said all players were going to New York.
Goaltender Tristan Jarry was the first player on the ice and continues to look as if his return could be imminent. Jarry apparently was close to returning Friday for Game 6 from a suspected broken foot he got April 14, but he did not dress for that game.
Also on the ice for the optional practice was winger Rickard Rakell, who left Game 1 after a hit by the Rangers’ Ryan Lindgren. He was deemed a game-time decision for Friday’s Game 6 by Sullivan, but he did not take line rushes in the morning or participate in the pregame warmup, and he did not play.
Sullivan listed Crosby, Jarry and Rakell as day to day.
There was no sign of forward Brian Boyle, who left Game 6 because of an unspecified injury, or defenseman Brian Dumoulin, who is listed as rehabbing off the ice. Sullivan said Boyle’s injury is still being evaluated.
The Penguins held the practice at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex before flying to New York for a Game 7 showdown Sunday in their first-round series. The Penguins have lost two in a row, games in which they could have clinched a spot in the second round.