Crosby Back on Bench With an Injured Ankle

Sidney Crosby says of his ankle injury, which has sidelined him for 22 of Pittsburgh's past 25 games,
Sidney Crosby says of his ankle injury, which has sidelined him for 22 of Pittsburgh's past 25 games, "It's just one of those nagging things." (By Gene J. Puskar -- Associated Press)
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Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Pittsburgh Penguins will have to wait to know if Marian Hossa is the ideal linemate for Sidney Crosby.

Crosby said after practice yesterday he will miss another week to recover from a high ankle sprain.

"I'm just going to take a week here to give it more time to rest," Crosby said. "It's just one of those nagging things. I know what's coming up in the future, and I want to make sure I give it the best possible chance to be strong."

The Penguins have yet to gauge the full impact of their trading deadline deal to acquire Hossa from the Atlanta Thrashers because either Hossa, Crosby or both have been hurt in every game since. Hossa has been slowed by a knee injury.

If Crosby remains out of the lineup that long, he will miss three more games: home tomorrow against Philadelphia, Tuesday at the New York Rangers, and home against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.

The Penguins are 12-6-4 without Crosby this season. He missed 21 games after hurting his right ankle in January, came back and played in three games, but then missed Wednesday's 7-3 home win against Buffalo because of ankle soreness.

Crosby said he would be in the lineup if the Penguins were in the playoffs.

In Hossa's first game with the Penguins, he played about 10 minutes before spraining his right knee in a knee-on-knee collision with Boston's Glen Murray on Feb. 28. Hossa has been out of the lineup since, but has been practicing and is expected to play tomorrow against Philadelphia.

If Crosby returns in a week and if Hossa stays healthy, they could play on the same line for the first time on April 5 when the Penguins host division-leading New Jersey.

Forward Petr Sykora did not practice yesterday because of a sore back. Forward Max Talbot, who missed the last game with a sore ankle, practiced and plans to play tomorrow.

-- From News Services

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