Share This Page

Penguins notebook: No concussion signs after Despres hit on Crosby

| Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, 7:54 p.m.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby maintains his focus while being checked by Simon Despres during a scrimmage on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Consol Energy Center.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby beats goaltender Eric Hartzell five hole during a scrimmage Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Consol Energy Center.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby breaks out during a scrimmage Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Consol Energy Center.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby maintains his balance after being checked by Simon Despres during a scrimmage on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Consol Energy Center.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin during a scrimmage on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Consol Energy Center.

Sidney Crosby acknowledged it could have been a lot worse.

Crosby's head was hit during a collision with defenseman Simon Despres during a scrimmage Friday. There was no indication of injury and/or concussion symptoms, Crosby said.

Despres was not at fault, Crosby said.

“I thought he had gone off for a line change,” said Crosby, whose head was down as he attempted to turn a breakout pass from Letang into a full breakaway.

“(Despres) let up on me. He could have really drilled me.”

Despres, who is fighting to earn a top-six slot on defense, said he “saw (Crosby) only a few seconds before” the hit.

“I knew it was him,” Despres said. “Still, I hit his head, so I was a little scared.”

Bylsma had no problem with the hit, even though Crosby, his club's captain, played in only 22 regular-season games from Jan. 5, 2011 to March 8, 2012, because of concussion symptoms.

“It was a clean hit, Simon making the right read, the right play,” Bylsma said. “I liked every part of it.”

Vitale strong

Center Joe Vitale is, by Bylsma's assessment, still establishing himself as an NHL player.

He has established a high standard during camp, Bylsma said.

“I don't think to this point he's gone full measure in what he brings to the table,” Bylsma said. “Having said that, what he's brought to this point (in camp) has been his best hockey as a Penguin. It's two scrimmages, two practices, but he's been very good.”

Vitale, a checking-line center, is not without competition. Center Chuck Kobasew is in camp on a professional tryout contract.

Two for Letang

Defenseman Kris Letang scored twice in Group B's 3-1 win over Group C in the second scrimmage of camp. Crosby also scored for Group B.

Group C, which featured center Evgeni Malkin, got a goal from center Jean-Sebastien Dea — a 19-year-old on an amateur tryout contract.

Opening the doors

A practice and scrimmage at Consol Energy Center is open to the public on Saturday.

Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Practice is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m., with the scrimmage to follow at approximately at 10 a.m.

Parking is free at arena lots.

Around the boards

Forward Tom Kuhnhackl, coming off a strong showing in games at the rookie tournament in London, Ontario, was not seriously injured Friday despite appearing to favor his torso during a Group C practice. … Right winger Anton Zlobin, a sixth-round pick at the 2012 Entry Draft, is rehabilitating an undisclosed injury, Bylsma said.

Rob Rossi is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at rrossi@tribweb.com or via Twitter @RobRossi_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.