Sidney Crosby is still wearing a white hat in Penguins practice -- not because he's ready to ride in as the team's hero, but because his helmet needs to contrast with his teammates' black ones to signify that he's not allowed to have contact.
Still, things have gone well in training camp for the team captain, who has been out since Jan. 5 because of a concussion.
"Everything's been really good," Crosby said Sunday. "I haven't run into any issues so far. It's been pretty smooth.
"A day at a time, but it's been a lot of fun being out there and getting back to doing the things you're used to doing every day as a hockey player."
At this point, being ready for the Oct. 6 season opener at Vancouver seems like a long shot. It's not known when he will take the next big step, which is being cleared for hitting, although he has had some incidental bumping at times.
He did break a little new ground Sunday when he participated in what he called a "really controlled" scrimmage of about 20 minutes. It featured frequent whistles and not much flow. Coach Dan Bylsma said it was mostly about working on faceoff plays and set plays that had not yet been introduced during camp.
Still, Crosby enjoyed participating
"It was a lot of teaching stuff," he said. "It was nice to refresh all that stuff. I was happy to be out there.
"You're just trying to make sure you're in the right places and go over that."
For much more on the Penguins, read the Pens Plus blog with Dave Molinari and Shelly Anderson at www.post-gazette.com/plus . Shelly Anderson: firstname.lastname@example.org , 412-263-1721 and Twitter @pgshelly.