Penguins' Letang back on ice for workout; Despres recalled
Penguins defenseman Kris Letang participated in an on-ice workout this morning for the first time since Feb. 29, when he did not finish a game at Dallas because of concussion symptoms.
Letang, who has played in only 40 games, producing 39 points, joined fellow injured Penguins defenseman Deryk Engelland for a briskly paced workout that lasted over 35 minutes. The session was conducted by team strength and conditioning coach Mike Kadar. Neither defenseman is expected to play tonight against the Florida Panthers.
Defenseman Paul Martin also was not present at the team's morning skate. The Penguins recalled defenseman Simon Despres from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Despres, the Penguins' 2009 first-round draft pick, recorded a goal and three assists in 14 games with the team earlier this season.
Letang missed 20 games earlier this season because of a concussion. As of now he has not been diagnosed with a second concussion even though the Penguins have acknowledged he is experiencing symptoms commonly associated with a neurological injury. The team has not identified those symptoms, and per policy about injured players Letang has not addressed his status.
There is no known timetable for his return.
The return the Penguins most anticipate is that of center Sidney Crosby, who will participate in another contact session today before tonight's game.
Crosby, out since Dec. 5 because of concussion symptoms, said Tuesday that his return could happen soon — though not before a home game Sunday against Boston. The Penguins did not practice Thursday, but Crosby did work out on his own.
The Penguins won have seven straight games.
Josh Yohe contributed to this story.