Pittsburgh Penguins forward Sidney Crosby hasn't even been back a week, but it has been long enough to earn the cover of Sports Illustrated for the issue dated May 13.
A portrait of Crosby in his road sweater decorates the national cover of this week's issue with the headline: "It's Showtime, Kid. The Most Amazing Thing about the Most Amazing Player." The story is by staff writer Michael Rosenberg.
Crosby, who missed 13 games with a fractured jaw suffered March 30, returned to the lineup for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the New York Islanders on Friday. All Crosby did in that game was score two goals in the first eight minutes. The Penguins, however, lost the game after a comeback by the Islanders.
Two nights later, in a very loud and hostile Nassau Coliseum, Crosby put up three assists -- including one on the game-winning goal by Chris Kunitz in overtime -- in a 5-4 win by the Penguins.
Game 4 is Tuesday night at Nassau Coliseum.
Despite missing the final dozen regular-season games, Crosby almost managed to fleece the NHL's scoring title. He finished with 56 points in 36 games, tied for third place with Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals. Crosby was passed during the final week of the regular season by a pair of Tampa Bay Lightning teammates, Martin St. Louis (60) and Steve Stamkos (57).