Comrie talks, leading to a "Say Anything" reference; also, Pens-Hawks to NBC.
February 8th, 2011

Not to suggest the Penguins have hit a rough patch, but LW Matt Cooke and RWs Tyler Kennedy and Pascal Dupuis are now the club’s healthy leading goal scorers, each with 10 markers. The loss of LW Chris Kunitz before this game – a 4-1 loss to Columbus at home – left the Penguins without four forwards (Cs Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Mark Letestu; and Kunitz) who have scored 75 of their 162 goals.

The latest on Crosby can be found here: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_722003.html

(Yes, if any dear readers are wondering, I’m growing tired of confirming denials of speculation about Crosby’s status. The bottom line: He isn’t symptom free yet, and that is all ANYBODY knows.)

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Injured C Mike Comrie granted the media an interview after the game. He is recovering from hip surgery, and remains slightly optimistic of returning for the Stanley Cup playoffs. I asked Comrie if his unfortunate experience of dealing with long injury-related layoffs this season and in previous ones could be of use for players such as Malkin and Letestu, who are new to that aspect of the NHL game. His response:

“It’s one of the frustrating parts of being professional athletes – dealing with and it coping with it, watching your teammates and friends play. Sid and ‘Geno’ are such big parts of this organization that you’ve got to wait for guys like that to be healthy. It’s hard, but everybody is in this together and we’ve got some great guys in this dressing room to help each other out.”

Comrie has been a completely stand-up guy since his arrival for training camp, and looking back perhaps the so-called hockey gods were sending a karma-to-come message when he broke camp with the bum hip. Hard to believe that only five months ago there was hope he could be a 20-goal scorer on this team, one of four players anticipated to hit that mark.

I can say this: The Penguins would have loved to see Comrie play the left wing on a line with Jordan Staal at center and Malkin on the right wing. That was the plan, and it never left the drawing board in coach Dan Bylsma’s office because of injuries.

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