They speak loudly.
The Pittsburgh Penguins were loud today.
It wasn’t just a typical practice at the CONSOL Energy Center this morning. An extremely well-written article by Trib writer Dejan Kovacevic called for some solidarity in regards to Sidney Crosby’s struggles among the fans and, shockingly, the Penguins locker room..
To quote Kovacevic’s article on the Tribune-Review:
A few, certainly not all, of Crosby’s teammates are of the mind that he’s been symptom-free for a while, though they have no medical basis for that. Some think he should be playing. Some simply think he should be doing more to communicate, or at least be as visible as concussed defenseman Kris Letang.
Last week in Pittsburgh, according to three sources, a group of players held a 45-minute meeting to discuss a temporary captaincy. Another source disputed that any such meeting occurred.
News of this supposed meeting sent shockwaves across the social media platforms this morning, fans and writers alike were concerned about the team attempting a mutiny on their injured captain.
The Penguins sent a clear message to the world when they took to the ice for the morning skate; each player donning a home made captain’s “C” on their jersey.
Message delivered, message received.
Sidney Crosby took to the ice shortly afterwards, and continued to dispel any of the rumors that surrounded a potential rift between he and his teammates.
“It’s so far-fetched. I’m not surprised that it’s when we’ve lost five or six in a row. If we had won five or six in a row, none of that stuff would have started. Let’s be honest, the Steelers are out, and the Penguins are what there is to talk about. Anything that can be brought up or started, especially given the situation, is a pretty easy fit. I’ve been around hockey long enough to know that this type of stuff starts when you’re losing.”
In perhaps what might be the most frank statement Crosby has ever made, he finished up with a final note for anyone still clinging to the rumor of a rift between the team.
“It’s too bad that we even have to sit here and talk about it, to be honest with you. It’s not even worth talking about.”
So, there you have it. Anyone left wondering about the attitude and solidarity of this team can take that final bit and chew on it for the rest of the weekend.
Crosby is still only cleared for light exertion, but hinted that he may still be experiencing motion issues associated with the first concussion he had at the Winter Classic last year.
Remember, the part of Crosby’s brain that was affected by this concussion was in specific reference to peripheral vision, speed, motion, and bouts of sickness that would occur from the combined effects of those elements.
“The motion stuff is still a little bit iffy. I want to make sure I give it a fair shot, but I know that this is something that I can improve,” said Crosby. “Being a little more familiar certainly helps a bit.”
While Crosby’s future on the ice this year is in question, the solidarity of the Pittsburgh Penguins is not.
A situation like this can have an effect on game-day performance, something Crosby was again quick to mention.
“A situation like this can really bring a team together. I think you’re going to see the results out there on the ice.”
Many things about this Penguin team are uncertain, but one is not.
This team is ready to play tonight and they are all behind their captain.
The message today was loud enough that none of us could possibly mistake it.
All audio utilized in this story was provided by the Pittsburgh Penguins.