Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Crosby in Stamkos' Corner

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Crosby in Stamkos' Corner

Article excerpt

The injury was gruesome.

It was awful for Tampa Bay center Steven Stamkos, whose right tibia was fractured when he slammed into a goalpost Monday in Boston.

It was terrible for the Lightning, which had a world-class talent wrenched from its lineup.

It was horrible for the sport, whose fans will be denied a chance to watch one of its most entertaining talents.

But it was not, Penguins center Sidney Crosby believes, a lethal blow to Stamkos' career.

He likely doesn't have access to inside information on Stamkos' prognosis, but Crosby seems convinced that Stamkos will be able to elevate his game to its customary level after his leg heals.

"The way he works -- that's not taking away anything from the severity of the injury because it looked pretty bad from what I saw - - but with his work ethic, the way he trains and the way he competes, I think he'll be OK," Crosby said.

Stamkos had successful surgery Tuesday at Massachusetts General Hospital to repair the damage, and precisely what the surgeons found might have an impact on how long he is out.

All concerned agreed that his recovery period will be measured in months; what isn't known is how many.

"If the operation goes well, I don't think there's any doubt that he comes back," Penguins defenseman Matt Niskanen said. "Does he have the same explosiveness, his same confidence level, things like that?

"I don't think he's been hurt that much, so we'll see how he reacts to that. There are a lot of variables, coming back from a tough injury like that, where you miss an extended amount of time and are trying to get back up to speed.

"But, from everything I've heard about him, he's got unbelievable character and will and work ethic ... he's got all the tools to come back from something like that."

Martin unlikely to face Flyers

Defenseman Paul Martin and left winger Tanner Glass sat out practice Tuesday, although both skated before their teammates worked out. …

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