Connect with us


Crosby Feels Better, Wants To Trend In Another Direction



Sidney Crosby speaks about coming back from COVID-19.

Sidney Crosby sure is trendy. As in, he gets everything. Or, more succinctly, the Pittsburgh Penguins captain comes down with seemingly everything — symptomatic COVID-19 being the latest thing going around the NHL — or in this case the world — that he had to deal with.

Not to make light of the prolonged and agonizing concussion recovery he went through about 10 years ago. Or the case of mumps he had about seven years ago. Or the virus he had recently. But, really, PHN just had to ask him if he wouldn’t vastly prefer to be trendy in other ways — on the ice, even for his fashion sense (not that that has ever been much discussed) or about anything other than to get seemingly every malady going through NHL locker rooms.

“I think it’s always kind of been like that,” he said of being more comfortable talking about things other than his health or other off-ice topics. “That hasn’t changed after this long. I’d prefer to be talking about hockey and nice plays and great goals and wins, but it happens. Sometimes it’s out of your control, and that’s the case here.”

Perhaps he would not be Sidney Crosby if he weren’t on the forefront of NHL trends.

Crosby spoke after the Penguins held a morning skate Tuesday at PPG Paints Arena in advance of a home game against the Buffalo Sabres. They were his first public comments since he tested positive for COVID-19.

Crosby, of course, not only had COVID-19 with symptoms, but he also had wrist surgery in September that kept him out of the lineup until Oct. 30. He played one game, and by his own admission not a great season debut, before he tested positive and was immediately back out of the lineup.

He’s hoping that frustrating time is behind him.

“It wasn’t fun. I don’t think it’s fun for anybody to have to (go through) that,” Crosby said. “But with the timing, being excited to get back and start back up and then get a positive test, it was tough, but you move by it. It’s good to be back here.

“With any injury, it’s just as much mental as it is physical. Just not having training camp and things like, not having a regular start to the season … given all that, I think I was even more excited than typically to get back.”

Crosby, 34, said he still has room to continue to work on his timing and get better day by day. He has no points in his first two, albeit spread out, games, and going through some symptoms from COVID-19 (he did not offer details but has been vaccinated) and through a 10-day protocol away from the team and away everything else made his return all the more difficult.

“It’s not a typical thing where you just sit around for 10 days and jump on the ice,” he said. “Typically, when you’re hurt you’re building, ramping up to get ready. So it’s totally something new that you’ve just got to kind of figure out along the way, just try to manage, try to get back to game shape and where you need to be. But that doesn’t happen in one practice or one game.

“I didn’t expect to feel great, and I didn’t, but I’m glad that I was finally able to get back in. … Physically, I feel really good. I just want to get in games here and get some timing and get back to feeling normal. I think that’s the biggest thing.”

Crosby said even re-establishing chemistry with his top-line wingers, Jake Guentzel and Bryan Rust, could take some time even those three have a history of jibing at an elite level.

Crosby is one of eight Penguins players who have spent time in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol.

Of note, Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said Crosby and defenseman Brian Dumoulin, who were diagnosed at the same time and returned Sunday in the same game, will be allowed to travel to Montreal for Thursday’s game against the Canadiens because enough time has elapsed since their last positive tests to meet the Canadian customs rules. However, Sullivan, who more recently tested positive and also returned Sunday, will not be allowed to travel to Montreal.