There are just three days before the Pens kick off their 50th anniversary season against the Washington Capitals at PPG Paints Arena on Thursday, meaning the Pens have little time to fine-tune their game before the regular-season begins, and they may do so without their captain.
-Sidney Crosby did not participate in Monday morning's practice after being diagnosed with a concussion. Crosby, who only participated in two practices during Pens' training camp, suffered the concussion in Friday's practice. There is no projected timetable for his return.
-The Pens held practice at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex Monday afternoon using the following line combinations and defensive pairs:
-While the lines remained the same as Saturday's preseason game, the Penguins made some changes to their special teams. The power play units looked like this…
-Both Marc Andre Fleury and Tristan Jarry were the first to hit the ice Monday, working on puck control behind the net and in the corners with goaltending coach Mike Bales.
"We don't get to work on things like that a lot during the summer," Fleury said. "I think it's important to work on the little things like handling the puck behind the net, especially with the regular season coming up."
-As the regular season inches closer, Carl Hagelin, who played in his first and only preseason game on Saturday, is looking to up the team's intensity level.
"I think that our battle level has to go up," Hagelin said when asked what the team needs to work on leading up to Thursday night's game. "We weren't hard enough on the puck last game. The intensity needs to go up, especially if we want to play the way we like to play the game. It's very up tempo. Everybody has to buy in with using their legs and back-checking hard and fore-checking hard. You can't coach out there if you want to play the way we want to play."
-Bryan Rust continued skating on his own Monday, there is no update on when he'll return.