With a slight lisp and a gap where his lower teeth used to be, Penguins captain Sidney Crosby spoke with the media today for the first time since suffering a broken jaw March 30:
A few other notes from today's practice at Southpointe:
-Dan Bylsma revealed James Neal has been diagnosed with a concussion as a result of being struck with the right elbow of Rangers defenseman Michael Del Zotto Friday. Neal will not travel with the team on its upcoming three-game road trip and there is no timetable for his recovery.
-Kris Letang skated with the team for the first time since suffering a toe injury March 26. There is no time table for his potential return.
-The team's top three lines were shuffled quite a bit:
Chris Kunitz - Evgeni Malkin - Jarome Iginla
Brenden Morrow - Jussi Jokinen - Pascal Dupuis
Matt Cooke - Brandon Sutter - Tyler Kennedy
The fourth line was a rotation of Craig Adams, Beau Bennett, Tanner Glass, Dustin Jeffrey and the great Joe Vitale.
-EN Says: We're still baffled at the NHL's inaction regarding the Del Zotto hit. At the very least, an explanation the league's thinking would be helpful. The league has been pretty up-front this season in terms of explaining its actions with and without suspensions.
-We like seeing Kunitz on the left wing with Malkin and Iginla. For all his success this season in terms of scoring, Kunitz's bread and butter is still forechecking. He should open things up quite a bit for Malkin and Iginla.
-The combination of Morrow, Jokinen and Dupuis is intriguing. That said, Morrow and Jokinen aren't exactly the greatest skaters in the world at this stage of their careers. Can Dupuis account for most of the forechecking and backchecking on that line?
-Sutter mentioned he played with Jokinen occasionally on his line while with the Hurricanes. The coaching staffs there would employ them on faceoffs. If one got waved out by an official, a capable replacement could take his place. If everyone gets healthy on this team, could the team use Jokinen is such a manner again?