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Chasing 82: Bylsma won’t rest Crosby down stretch

Apr 1, 2014, 12:13 PM EDT

Sidney Crosby, Dan Bylsma AP

For everything Sidney Crosby‘s accomplished during his eight-year career, playing all 82 games in a single season has eluded him.

But this year, he’s got a shot to do it — and his head coach seems keen on getting him there. From the L.A. Times:

Dan Bylsma has no intention of resting Crosby before the playoffs.

“I think Sid remembers too well not playing all the games in a season and, I think, cherishes playing every game,” Bylsma said. “Whether it’s 82 or 78, he’s been there for us all year long.

“I got a plaque for playing all 82 games one time. I used it in the winter to make sure my tires didn’t slide in the driveway.”

Crosby’s twice gotten to the 81 games plateau. The first time came during his rookie campaign and the second occurred in the 2009-10 season, when he won his first and only Maurice Richard trophy as the league’s top goalscorer, with 51 tallies.

Since then, health has been an issue. To say the least.

Concussion problems and a broken jaw have seen him miss 113 games over the last three seasons, which makes this year so special — Crosby’s shouldering a full load, averaging over 22 minutes per game, while being one of just five Penguins to play in all 75 games.

Not that he’s about to start patting himself on the back.

“You just play,” Crosby told the Times. “I’ve always tried to take care of myself and you train in the off-season to be strong and hopefully play a full season and sometimes it doesn’t work out that way. In my case it’s happened a lot that it hasn’t.

“You just try to play the same way every night and play hard and trust that will get you through it.”

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