Sidney Crosby Islanders – Sidney Crosby split a pair of defenders, worked the puck to his backhand and let it fly. New York Islanders goaltender Anders Nilsson never had a chance. He’s back.
The Pittsburgh Penguins superstar capped his 10-month comeback from concussion-like symptoms in thrilling fashion, scoring a pair of goals to go with two assists in a 5-0 victory on Monday.
It was a storybook end to Crosby’s frustratingly methodical return, one marked by numerous setbacks, rumors and questions about whether the 24-year-old former MVP would regain the form that’s made him one of the league’s most popular players.
The early returns were a resounding yes.
Skating onto the ice to chants of “Crosby! Crosby!” the Penguins captain wasted little time showing he was back for good.
Pittsburgh nearly scored on his first shift and he made his third one count, taking a pass from linemate Pascal Dupuis before racing through the New York defense and zeroing in on Nilsson. The gloveside backhand was good for a moment that was nearly a year in the making.
Crosby thrust his arms to the sky in triumph, letting out a guttural scream as crowd waved “Sid!” signs.
Crosby played with the kind of peerless ferocity that’s become his trademark, the kind his teammates have seen enough of since training camp began to think the road back to spectacular play for their leader will be a short one.
Yet Crosby knows he will get hit again. He welcomes it. He doesn’t want to get treated as if he’s in bubble wrap. He just wants to get after it.