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Crosby skates in light workout, says return to game uncertain

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Monday, March 14, 2011
 

BOCA RATON, Fla. — The first day of annual NHL general manager meetings in Florida will be dominated by significant news from Pittsburgh.

Penguins center Sidney Crosby skated this morning for 15 minutes at Consol Energy Center. It was a light on-ice workout during the 9 a.m. hour, and included him donning full gear and some cone drills for stick-handling.

“Everyday things are pretty good now,” he said, referring to a decrease in symptoms (headaches) from a concussion that has kept him from playing since Jan. 5.

Rumors regarding Crosby's health have caused moments of panic for Penguins fans for the past few months. The high-alert point came late last week when a Toronto radio station cited a Crosby family member as saying the Penguins captain would retire because of the concussion.

Crosby did not identify a possible return date. He said he has “no clue” if he will play again this season.

"That's impossible to say," he said. "It's progress. I'm nowhere close to (playing). I just want to get through it (this morning's workout) without getting a headache let alone (worry) about my conditioning."

He has not played since Jan. 5, when the Penguins said he was concussed by a hit from behind into the boards by Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman. Crosby also absorbed a blindside hit from then-Washington forward David Steckel at the Winter Classic on Jan. 1.

Crosby was the NHL leader in goals and points at the time of his injury. His 32 goals are currently sixth and his 66 points are 11th.

Prior to this workout Crosby had engaged in only light exercising because of lingering symptoms from his first concussion. As of this past Thursday Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said there was no change on Crosby's status, that he was still experiencing symptoms that included random headaches.

Crosby has missed the last 29 games.

A potential return date has not been identified by the team. General manager Ray Shero is in South Florida for annual meetings with his 29 contemporaries. On the docket for discussion over the three-day meetings will be head injuries. As of Friday, according the web site theconcussionblog.com , 72 NHL players had been diagnosed with concussions this season.

Staff writer Josh Yohe contributed to this story.

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