Center Sidney Crosby will visit with his medical team Tuesday to determine if he is ready for contact.
Crosby, out of NHL games since Jan. 5 because of a concussion, is scheduled to meet with Michael Collins, a clinical neuropsychologist who heads the UPMC Sports Medicine Concussion Program, the Penguins confirmed Monday night.
Crosby is not expected to play for the Penguins in their home opener Tuesday night against the Florida Panthers at Consol Energy Center.
Collins has overseen Crosby's treatment from the start and will determine if he can return to contact situations in practices — the next step as Crosby prepares for his anticipated return to games.
Crosby has not missed a scheduled practice dating to the start of training camp Sept. 17. He traveled with the Penguins to Western Canada last week, and said prior to that trip he would likely meet with his medical team upon his return.
Ted Carrick, a Florida-based chiropractor who specializes in neurological treatment, is also part of Crosby's concussion team — though he was not referred to Crosby by Collins. It is not known if Carrick will also evaluate Crosby on Tuesday.
The Penguins have not set a timetable for Crosby's return to games, though there is a general feel within the organization that the face of the franchise is doing better now than at any point during his recovery.
The Penguins (2-0-1, 5 points) face the Panthers at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday night. It is not known if center Evgeni Malkin (undisclosed lower-body injury) will play.
Malkin, coming off right knee surgery last February, did not play Sunday at Edmonton.
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