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The Penguins created a brief spark of hope over the weekend that they could start their 2021-22 campaign with Sidney Crosby, after the Pittsburgh captain skated with the team on Saturday and took part in practice morning of the team before the last pre-season game in Columbus.

But that flint of possibility was extinguished on the morning of the opening of the season, when it was announced that he was on the team’s unlisted injured roster. While on this list, his cap of $ 8.7 million counts towards the Penguins’ payroll, but not the team’s 23-player limit.

Pittsburgh opens the season Tuesday night in Tampa Bay against defending champion Lightning.

MORE: Watch the 2021-22 NHL Season on ESPN +

What is Sidney Crosby’s injury?

On September 8, the Penguins announced that Crosby had undergone surgery on his left wrist.

“It’s not a new injury for Sid. It’s something he’s been through for years,” general manager Ron Hextall said in the squad announcement. “After exhausting all minimally invasive options and much discussion, it was decided that the surgery was in her best interest.”

Crosby had previously had his wrist unrestrained on August 31, 2020, by then-CEO Jim Rutherford. The wrist didn’t seem to bother him much in the 2021 season, as he scored 62 points (24 goals, 38 assists) in 55 games; his only missed match was due to COVID-19 protocols. He scored just two points in the Penguins’ six-game loss to the Islanders.

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When is Sidney Crosby expected to return?

Pittsburgh said Crosby would miss training camp and at least the first week of the season when the news originally broke. The Penguins star is expected to miss Tuesday and Thursday’s games against the Lightning and Panthers, respectively. Pittsburgh opens the season at home on Saturday against the Blackhawks.

His loss leaves a big hole in the top six and the power play for the Penguins. With 468 goals and 1325 points, Crosby is set to have a big year in North America and China. The 2010 gold scorer has already been named to Canada’s Olympic team in 2022.

Also on set right now at Steel City is Evgeni Malkin, who underwent right knee surgery in early June. He was placed on the long-term injured list on Tuesday.

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