Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Penguins' Shero: Crosby's Status Didn't Figure into Lack of Trade Deadline Deals: Crosby Has Nothing to Do with Lack of Trades

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Penguins' Shero: Crosby's Status Didn't Figure into Lack of Trade Deadline Deals: Crosby Has Nothing to Do with Lack of Trades

Article excerpt

PITTSBURGH, Pa. - Pittsburgh Penguins general manager Ray Shero, uncommonly quiet at the trading deadline, still has a player in mind he wants before the end of the season.

An elite centre who makes every player around him better. A skilled scorer and playmaker. A player every other NHL team covets.

A guy named Sidney Crosby.

"I'm hopeful he'll be able to come back and play. There's no guarantee of that," Shero said.

For the first time in his six seasons in Pittsburgh, Shero failed Monday to pull off a trading deadline deal. In past seasons, he added players such as Marian Hossa, James Neal, Bill Guerin, Pascal Dupuis, Chris Kunitz and Gary Roberts, all of whom played significant roles for playoff-bound teams, but the Penguins sat this one out.

It is believed this was the first time since the 1980s that the Penguins failed to make a significant move at the deadline.

All those Shero-acquired players were added with the idea of either playing beside or complementing Crosby. And while it was speculated in Pittsburgh that Shero stayed on the sideline this time because he expects Crosby to return in the near future, he said that wasn't true.

The reality, he said, is the asking price for the players that interested the Penguins simply was too high.

"It was just one of those trade deadlines. We've always been active doing something," Shero said. "This is the first time we have not done anything. It just really wasn't there for us in terms of the players that were available."

Still, Shero has insisted for weeks that he is comfortable with a team that has played well even without Crosby. The Penguins are 15-4-1 since mid-January despite being without their sidelined superstar, who has played just eight games in the last 14 months.

Crosby is skating again with the Penguins, but his return date remains uncertain because of ongoing concussion-like symptoms. …

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