With the threat of a lockout looming, it's far from certain that the 2012-13 NHL season will begin on time.
But if it does, Penguins center Sidney Crosby looks as if he will be ready for it.
Crosby, who missed the final half of the 2010-11 season and much of 2011-12 because of concussion and neck problems, joined 14 teammates for an informal workout at Southpointe today, and looked particularly sharp with the puck for this time of year.
More important, he reported after the sessions that he has no physical problems and did not experience any setbacks or other issues while training during the summer.
"It's been really good," he said. "Nothing. I've been feeling 100 percent. It feels good to not have to think about that, and to work as hard as you want. It's been really good"
Crosby spent much of the off-season training in Los Angeles, and said, "I began skating a little earlier than I usually do" because of the time he lost while injured.
While he clearly is eager for training camp to open and games to begin, Crosby said the labor uncertainty in the league -- the NHL's collective bargaining agreement is set to expire Saturday night -- is having an impact on his preparations for the season.
"It's a little bit of a tricky situation," he said.
Crosby and about a dozen teammates are scheduled to travel to New York Wednesday for an NHL Players' Association meeting that is expected to attract 200 or 300 players from around the league. Crosby said his role there will be the same as that of any other NHLPA member.
He also confirmed that, because of all the time he missed in the past couple of seasons, he will consider offers to play in Europe if the lockout drags on. There is, Crosby added, no time frame for making a decision about doing that
First Published September 11, 2012 4:45 AM