Crosby won't play in Penguins' playoff opener

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Sidney Crosby won't be playing in the Penguins' playoff opener tonight.

Crosby, whose jaw was broken by a deflected puck March 30, was examined Tuesday and told that the fracture has not healed enough for him to resume playing.

"He said everything was good," Crosby said. "He just wasn't prepared to declare me (ready) to play. Obviously, I would have loved to have had a chance to play tonight, but that's not the way it is.

"I wanted to make sure I'm ready when the time comes."

The Penguins will open their first-round series against the New York Islanders today at 7:38 p.m. at Consol Energy Center.

Crosby said he does not have another appointment with the doctor scheduled, that "I'm sure he'll be around and checking on things pretty closely."

He added that the doctor "didn't give me a date, and I'm sure if he gives me a date, he knows I'll have a pretty high expectation (of receiving clearance to return then)."

Crosby was a runaway leader in the NHL scoring race and a heavy favorite to be named the league Most Valuable Player when a shot by teammate Brooks Orpik deflected off Islanders forward Brad Boyes and slammed into his face.

The fractured jaw forced Crosby to sit out the final 12 games of the regular season, and Tampa Bay winger Martin St. Louis overtook him last week to claim the scoring title.

Crosby had to undergo surgery, during which titanium plates were used to hold the pieces of his jaw together, and has had extensive dental work, with more to come.

He worked out on the ice at Consol Energy Center with conditioning coach Mike Kadar before the Penguins' game-day skate this morning, then participated in the skate itself, but did so with other forwards expected to sit out Game 1.

"Whenever I take a regular morning skate," Crosby said, "I'm sure that will be a pretty good sign that I'm in."

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Dave Molinari: and Twitter @MolinariPG. First Published May 1, 2013 3:45 PM


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