Pittsburgh Penguins will be without captain Sidney Crosby during their opening game of the 2021-22 NHL season against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Crosby revealed this news in an episode of Monday Night Football.
While the 34-year-old star made the trip to Tampa Bay with his team and participated in practices, he is still recovering from a wrist surgery that he had in early September. His left wrist’s post-surgery recovery is expected to take six weeks.
Crosby’s leadership is not the only thing that will be lacking as the Penguins open the new season against the reigning Stanley Cup Champions. Center Evgeni Malkin has been ruled out of the clash as he recovers from an offseason knee injury, while forwards Jake Guentzel and Zach Aston-Reese will be unavailable after both players tested positive for COVID-19 during training camp.
The Penguins’ injured players proved to form a crucial part of the team’s offensive efforts last season, with Crosby leading the Penguins’ scoring with 62 points, followed by Guentzel with 57 points.
While the Lightning may be the reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Penguins have also proven to be highly successful in recent seasons, winning both the 2016 and 2017 Stanley Cup championships.