Sidney Crosby

Sidney Crosby wants someone to hit him


It was big news last week when doctors cleared Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby for contact during practice, something many saw as a major step towards returning to action.

Just one problem. Since the announcement, Pittsburgh’s barely had any practices.

Thanks to a grueling opening schedule, injuries and suspensions, the Pens have taken an Iverson-esque approach to practice. (Practice?) Pittsburgh’s been limited almost entirely to game-day skates, conducting just one off-day practice (practice!) since Crosby was cleared.

Not ideal, according to No. 87.

“It will be nice to kind of get into those situations, not just being hit, but being able to go out there and think and react,” Crosby told reporters today. “You can only do so many drills by yourself.”

Crosby might be doing solo drills for a while. The Pens have five more games over the next 10 days (though three of them are at the Consol Energy Center) and don’t get a significant break until early November, when they’re off from Nov. 6-10. Realistically speaking, that window looks to be Crosby’s first opportunity to receive some contact.

“I’m anxious for that for sure but, that being said, there needs to be times and situations and we haven’t gotten a lot of those lately with our schedule,” Crosby said. “As things go on, we’ll get more and more time and hopefully get a better feel for where I’m at as far as contact is concerned.”

Here’s a question for you: If you’re a Penguin, aren’t you a little leery of delivering Crosby’s first hit? Because the thought of re-injuring him is a terrifying proposition. If it happens in the course of an actual game, that’s understandable — but if you’re on the same team and you take Crosby out in practice? That’s heavy.

Derek Roy signs in Swiss league

Derek Roy, Jeremy Smith, Chris Kelly
Leave a comment

Derek Roy has finally found work — but it’s not in the NHL.

Roy, who spent the entire preseason in Washington’s camp on a PTO, has signed with SC Bern of Switzerland’s National League A, the club announced on Friday.

The news comes after Roy narrowly missed out on making the Caps roster, and just one year after he had something of a bounce-back campaign in Edmonton, scoring 22 points in 46 games while developing chemistry with young winger Nail Yakupov.

A 12-year NHL veteran, Roy is one of the more prominent names to be squeezed out of work this season, and head overseas. The 31-year-old has scored over 500 points in 738 career contests, and has twice represented Canada at the World Hockey Championships.

With Bern, Roy will play on one of Switzerland’s stronger teams, alongside a trio of ex-NHLers: Chuck Kobasew, Andrew Ebbett and Cory Conacher.

Lehner’s injury ‘doesn’t look like it’s short term’

Robin Lehner
AP Photo
Leave a comment

Robin Lehner might not be back anytime soon.

Making his debut with the Buffalo Sabres, the 24-year-old goaltender couldn’t complete Thursday’s game against his former squad, the Ottawa Senators, due to what has now been revealed to be a right leg injury.

When he left the arena, he was wearing a walking boot on that nearly went up to his knee.

“It doesn’t look like it’s short term,” Sabres coach Dan Bylsma told the Buffalo News. “It’s more than day-to-day at this point, but we need to evaluate further.”

It’s a rocky start to what’s an important campaign for Lehner. He has been given an opportunity to demonstrate that he’s ready to be a starting goaltender after being acquired by the Sabres over the summer, but it looks like that will have to be postponed.

While he’s sidelined, Chad Johnson is likely to be leaned on heavily.