Skip to content

Penguins say Crosby’s return will “be like Christmas morning”

Mar 5, 2012, 2:04 PM EST

Sidney Crosby, Tyler Kennedy AP

It’s tough for the Pittsburgh Penguins not to think about Sidney Crosby. They’re 8-2 over their last 10 and one of only two Eastern Conference teams to crack the 80-point plateau, which is pretty good.

This naturally leads to thoughts about how they be even better with No. 87 in the lineup — something the Pens can’t help but think about.

“We’re hoping it’s going to be like Christmas morning one day,” defenseman Ben Lovejoy told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. “We’re going to walk in and, ‘Oh, cool. We get the best player in the world back.'”

“A lot of us think about the possibilities,” defenseman Paul Martin added. “I think a lot of us realize how good we are right now. You get the best player in the league back — and don’t forget about how well [Evgeni Malkin] is playing — and yeah, we realize how good we can be.”

What’s stunning is that, despite being among the leaders in man-games lost to injury, Pittsburgh’s depth continues to overwhelm opponents. Kris Letang (a potential Norris candidate when healthy) has missed almost a third of the season while Zbynek Michalek, Jordan Staal, Tyler Kennedy and Dustin Jeffrey have all missed at least 20 games.

But on the flip side…James Neal is scoring at a point-a-game clip. Chris Kunitz is on pace for just the third 50-point season of his career. Pascal Dupuis should break 40 points for the first time since the lockout and Steve Sullivan — who has been an injury nightmare since the lockout — has played in all 64 games. That’s depth.

And that’s why the Penguins keep daydreaming about Crosby’s return.

“You don’t want to get too excited, because you never really know,” Martin said. “But in the back of our minds, we’re thinking about it.

“We hope it happens.”

Latest Posts
  1. Video: Flames score on their own empty net

    Dec 20, 2014, 11:20 PM EST

    Canucks goal

    They had pulled their goaltender on a delayed penalty.

  2. Vasilevskiy stops 45 shots in second NHL start, but falls to Islanders

    Dec 20, 2014, 11:05 PM EST

    Tampa Bay Lightning v New York Islanders Getty Images

    Stamkos hopes this loss will serve as a wake up call.

  3. Giroux line takes Leafs ‘to school’ in Flyers’ 7-4 victory

    Dec 20, 2014, 10:43 PM EST

    cd0ymzcznguwzdbhnduynddiytjhm2yyzthlmtjjotqwyyznpwuzoduwotrhmju5njfjnwe4mjgyyjllyzyxyzu0odkz AP

    Ray Emery certainly got a lot of offensive help with Steve Mason out.

  4. Ovechkin scores beauty as Caps shutout Devils

    Dec 20, 2014, 9:55 PM EST

    Alex Ovechkin Getty Images

    It’s the third time this month New Jersey has been goalless.

  5. Sabres lose Kaleta, Myers in defeat to Avalanche

    Dec 20, 2014, 9:35 PM EST

    Tyler Myers Getty Images

    Calvin Pickard had another great game.

  6. Video: Willie Mitchell wields Letang’s helmet as a weapon

    Dec 20, 2014, 9:08 PM EST

    Willie Mitchell Getty Images

    It’s been a heated game between Pittsburgh and Florida.

  7. Leafs scratch Gardiner for third time this season

    Dec 20, 2014, 7:20 PM EST

    Jake Gardiner Getty Images

    Carlyle’s been unhappy with his “very erratic” play.

  8. Finally clicking Gaborik, Kopitar add to Coyotes’ woes

    Dec 20, 2014, 7:00 PM EST

    Devan Dubnyk, Marian Gaborik AP

    They’ve combined for 13 points in the Kings’ last two games.

  9. Brassard (mumps) set to return Saturday night

    Dec 20, 2014, 5:24 PM EST

    Derick Brassard Getty Images

    He might shatter some career-highs this season.

  10. Columbus hopes Hartnell can play after the holiday break

    Dec 20, 2014, 5:09 PM EST

    Ottawa Senators  v Columbus Blue Jackets Getty Images

    He’s shooting for Dec. 27 against Boston.

  11. Devils place Cammalleri on IR, call up Larsson and Sislo

    Dec 20, 2014, 4:24 PM EST

    Dallas Stars v New Jersey Devils Getty Images

    Larsson went to the AHL on a conditioning assignment.

  12. Goalie nods: Corey Crawford returns

    Dec 20, 2014, 3:27 PM EST

    Corey Crawford Getty Images

    Saturday’s slew of starting goalies.

  13. Sickness and uncertainty prompt Pens to recall Pouliot, Chorney (Update)

    Dec 20, 2014, 1:22 PM EST

    pouliot2 Getty Images

    Good luck trying to forecast their lines for Saturday.

Featured video

More than a Stanley Cup hangover?
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. S. Crosby (4284)
  2. B. Bishop (3505)
  3. C. Crawford (2609)
  4. D. Krejci (2596)
  5. C. Kunitz (2493)
  1. C. Perry (2304)
  2. O. Palat (2179)
  3. B. Elliott (2159)
  4. T. Oshie (1929)
  5. M. Cammalleri (1676)