Reporting Lynne Hayes-Freeland
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Excited, anxious and maybe even a little apprehensive, that may best describe how Penguins’ fans feel going into Monday’s game against the New York Islanders.
But that’s not just because of the Pens’ two-game losing skid on their most recent trip to Florida. Nope, it is all about the long-awaited, highly-anticipated return of Sidney Crosby.
The announcement was made Sunday afternoon that the Pens’ captain would be making his season debut on Monday night.
He’s been out of the lineup since suffering a concussion in January.
Over at the new “Penguins Pond” on the South Side, Crosby fans say waiting for Sid to get back in the lineup seems like it has taken a long, long time.
“Forever,” said one fan. “I feel like I haven’t seen him skate or play forever.”
But the wait ends Monday in front of a hometown crowd when the Pens take on the Islanders.
“You knew it was going to be a home game, it was just which home game was it going to be, and the Islanders are as good a team as any,” said another fan.
Fans say they are a little apprehensive though, taking the recovery from a concussion very seriously and hoping that Crosby isn’t rushing back to the ice too soon.
“I’m nervous that he might get hurt again. That he’s not all the way recovered,” one Pens’ fan said. “But I think since he’s been out so long, I think he’s ready to give it his all.”
Many of the young hockey players enjoying their Sunday night over at the Penguins’ outdoor ice rink said they can’t wait until Crosby takes to the ice.
When asked about their favorite player, most said Crosby, but kids are kids. So, when asked, ‘Who do you want to be like?’ There’s always one who catches you off guard.
“Justin Beiber!” said one little Pens fan.
Okay, so he’s a Crosby fan who likes a little music too!