Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan delivered bad news Thursday when he confirmed that superstar captain Sidney Crosby will miss Saturday's home game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Crosby continues his recovery from wrist surgery he underwent back on Sept. 8. In addition, forward Jeff Carter tested positive for COVID-19 and goaltender Tristan Jarry was in the NHL's coronavirus-related protocol.
Penguins fans received positive updates ahead of the weekend.
Per Wes Crosby of the league's website, both Crosby and Jarry were back on the practice ice Friday.
Proof Sidney Crosby exists: pic.twitter.com/tshtEkycy6— Wes Crosby (@OtherNHLCrosby) October 22, 2021
Sidney Crosby working in a bit with the second power play. He also rotated a little with Drew O'Connor on the third line.— Wes Crosby (@OtherNHLCrosby) October 22, 2021
Remember, Crosby was ruled out for Saturday by Sullivan yesterday. #Pens pic.twitter.com/hnzTFLWO3o
Jarry is 2-0-1 with a 1.62 goals-against average and .935 save percentage in three starts this season. His status for Saturday is unclear.
Crosby, meanwhile, hasn't yet played this fall, and Michelle Crechiolo of the team's website noted that the 34-year-old spoke with the media following his skating session:
Sidney Crosby is speaking with the media for the first time since undergoing his wrist procedure.— Pens Inside Scoop (@PensInsideScoop) October 22, 2021
“Glad we took care of it, and hopefully I can get back in the lineup here shortly.” pic.twitter.com/X7A0y9fTm9
"The first time I ever injured it was 7 years ago. (Ryan Reaves) got ahold of me pretty good at home here after the Olympics," Crosby added about the setback. "It was something that I kind of had to manage since then, and was able to avoid having to do any surgeries or anything like that until last year.
Crosby continued: "It was something I was always able to manage somehow in the summer, just being able to get rest. Then obviously during the year, it was something that would kind of come back and I would get through it. Then this year, it just wouldn’t come back over the summer.
"So I think we all felt like it was something I wouldn’t have got through this season if I didn’t take care of it. Unfortunately, end up missing some time here early, but I guess the other side of that was missing a lot more games, probably, in the middle of the year."
Crosby said at this point, he hasn't really had any force, "whether it be through faceoffs or lifting sticks or going against guys. Battling, pushing around, shoving...those are things I haven’t been able to do." When he can do those things comfortably, that'll be a big step.— Pens Inside Scoop (@PensInsideScoop) October 22, 2021
From reading the writing on the wall, it seems as if Crosby and company aren't sure if he'll be good to go for Tuesday's matchup against the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Athletic's Rob Rossi previously suggested Crosby wouldn't be in the lineup by then.
The Penguins will enter Saturday at 2-0-2, while Toronto is 2-1-1 ahead of Friday's contest versus the San Jose Sharks.