Penguins star Crosby returns to practice after concussion

It's still uncertain whether he will be available for Game 5 on Saturday night in Washington.

The Penguins have gotten by and even thrived despite those deficiencies primarily by defending hard in front of their own net, blocking a ton of shots and getting great goaltending from Marc-Andre Fleury. Game 5 is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. ET Saturday in Washington.

One "fortunate" thing is that we can go back to Crosby's last concussion recovery this past October to see how the Penguins handled that. "I don't think it's to send a message or something".

"What I've really admired about this group of players that we have", Sullivan said, "is just their compete level that allows them the opportunity to find ways to win games".

Like so many other Penguins, Cole struggled at the start of last season under head coach Mike Johnston, and he didn't come out of his slump until it was nearly spring. We'll see how he responds and we'll go from there.

When Sidney Crosby was ruled out for Game 4, it was presumed that somebody would need to step up in his absence. He needed almost two years to recover from one sustained in January 2011, and missed two weeks when he was diagnosed with a concussion last October. Winger Conor Sheary is also a game-time decision after passing a baseline test.

So is Crosby, who looked every bit his unsafe self on Friday at practice. He missed significant time between 2011 and 2013 with head injuries and sat out the first six games of this season with another concussion. They're one loss away from remembering this season as the one with the most talented Caps team in history, and that still shit the bed in the playoffs and ended by freaking out and pinning blame on Ovechkin.

"I think having gone through this I'd like to think I'm pretty aware of my body at this point", he said.

"You just relay how you feel and direct it from there", he said. "I trust the staff and process".

He called the Ovechkin slash "a pretty common play" but stopped sort of classifying Niskanen's in a similar fashion. He reserved judgment on Niskanen, a former teammate.

Trotz said that he wanted to get Ovechkin some practice reps on the third line so he could get used to playing with Eller and Wilson in case he wants to double shift him in that spot Saturday. Things happen fast out there.”.

"Sid is a very intelligent young man and he will make the right decision", Trotz said.

In other Penguins news, fellow forward Conor Sheary - also now sidelined with a concussion - made his return to practice today, and also took full contact. Crosby - and Sheary - both returned immediately to full-contact status. It was Crosby's first time back on the ice since.

"It's the same as it was yesterday", Sullivan said.

  • Julie Sanders