Sidney Crosby discusses NHL lockout, Penguins' chances

Justin K. Aller - Getty Images

Sidney Crosby takes part in an extensive interview.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby participated in an interview with Seth Rorabaugh of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which was published on Wednesday afternoon.

Covering a wide array of topics, Crosby discussed the ongoing collective bargaining negotiations between the NHL and NHL Players Association.

While several players have expressed dissatisfaction with the process, Crosby took a diplomatic approach and explained that while he was frustrated with the situation, he hoped that both sides could find a way to compromise so that everyone could get back to work. He added that he felt optimistic about the discussions as it finally seemed like both sides were negotiating rather than arguing.

Considering Crosby is attempting to play in his first full season since struggling with concussion problems in 2010-11, the topic of head shots came up. The star forward expressed his interest in having head shots completely removed from the game as to avoid future concussion problems for other players, via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

The game's getting faster and guys aren't getting any smaller. With everyone being so aware of concussions now, that's something that you really have to pay attention to.

In terms of looking forward to the 2012-13 regular season, the topic of defense also came up. The Penguins last set of games came in the first round of the postseason, during which they allowed 30 goals over a six-game series against the Philadelphia Flyers. Crosby acknowledged that the team needed to tighten up in their own end.

"I think we gave up big chances. They weren't little mistakes where maybe we eventually got a stick on the puck. It was big chance. You can't give those up. We just really have to tighten up our defensive zone and make sure we're getting out of there quick and not allowing teams to sustain pressure."

In the event that the lockout drags on for an extended period of time, Crosby expressed an interest in playing overseas on a club with players that he already has personal relationships with. Teammate Evgeni Malkin is currently playing with Metallurg Magnitogorsk in Russia's Kontinental Hockey League and hopes to talk Crosby into joining him.

However, Crosby wouldn't acknowledge if that was a place he would consider going.

"We've texted. I've been texted him basically to keep him updated on what's going on here [...] I texted him the other day after he scored that nice one. He doesn't look like he's too rusty."

This story originally appeared at SB Nation.

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