Penguins captain Sidney Crosby
did not participate in the team's optional practice on Thursday afternoon at Mellon Arena, one day after leaving Pittsburgh's game against the Washington Capitals in the third period with an undisclosed injury.
Crosby suffered a lower-body injury after colliding with Washington's David Steckel along the boards. He is listed as day-to-day and his status is unknown for Friday's showdown with the Anaheim Ducks at Mellon Arena at 7:30 p.m.
"I need to see if I can skate so tomorrow morning I'll test it out and see how I feel," Crosby said. "I haven't tried anything (today) so tomorrow I'll have a better idea of what's going on.
"I think I have a pretty good idea of what I'm looking for when I go out there tomorrow. You kind of have to find out exactly the nature of the injury and whether it's going to hurt me to keep playing even if it is painful, or if there's a lot more risk involved. I'll have a better idea tomorrow when I skate what that is."
Crosby fell awkwardly to the ice after the collision. He hobbled to the bench with the aid of an NHL linesman. At the first stop in play, Crosby left the ice and went to the Penguins locker room. He missed 29 games last year with a high ankle sprain and the sight of Crosby's recent injury gave his head coach a scare.
"That's what you're first thinking, is it going to be a long-term injury like we had last year?" Michel Therrien said. "When we got the news this morning we were pleased about the day-to-day, let's put it this way."
"I didn't have too much swelling," said Crosby, who had an MRI performed on the injury. "So that's a good thing. You kind of have to see how you react when you're out there on the ice. As far as the swelling goes too, sometimes things flair up a little bit more so you have to be careful with that."
None of the players that were injured in the team's 6-3 loss against Washington on Wednesday practiced. Absent were Crosby, Maxime Talbot and Rob Scuderi.
Scuderi left the game in the first period after a shot hit him in the face. He did not return in the game and is listed as day-to-day.
"He didn't have a concussion," Therrien said. "His head is pretty swollen from what I heard this morning so he decided to stay home."
Talbot was lost early in the third period and did not return. He is also listed as day-to-day.>
Defenseman Sergei Gonchar took part in his first team practice since having arthroscopic surgery on his shoulder Oct. 2 to repair cartilage and ligament damage. Gonchar, who wore a red "no contact" jersey, had been practicing on his own for a couple of weeks.
It's really exciting. It's been a while since I've skated with the guys. I'm going in the right direction and everything is going according to plan. I made the next step forward, now I have to continue to make progress. - Sergei Gonchar
"It's really exciting," Gonchar said. "It's been a while since I've skated with the guys. I'm going in the right direction and everything is going according to plan. I made the next step forward, now I have to continue to make progress.
Gonchar took wrist shots and participated in all of the skating drills. Gonchar still isn't able to have contact or take slap shots until four months after surgery, which would be around the beginning of February. There is no timetable for his return.
"I'm not going to give any time frames," Gonchar said. "You can't really set one up. It's going to depend on the muscles in my body and how it's going to react to it. Sometimes it's longer, sometimes it's quicker. As soon as I'm ready I'll be there.
"From now on I'm going to skating every day with the team and travel with the them until I can have contact, and then (start) playing.">
Forward Pascal Dupuis
, who missed the past four games with an undisclosed injury, skated before practice with strength and conditioning coach Mike Kadar.
A total of 15 players participated, including forwards Matt Cooke
, Paul Bissonnette, Dustin Jeffrey
, Chris Minard, Tyler Kennedy
and Eric Godard, defensemen Philippe Boucher, Mark Eaton, Hal Gill, Ryan Whitney, Gonchar, Alex Goligoski and Brooks Orpik
and goaltenders Dany Sabourin and Marc-Andre Fleury