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Pittsburgh Penguins Training Camp: Pens Open Camp With A Number Of Players Battling Through Injuries

The Penguins kicked off training camp on Friday and, as Charlie mentioned, Sidney Crosby has begun practicing with the team, albeit in a limited capacity.

How far Crosby will go by the end of training camp is up for debate, but the Penguins' star center has gone on record as saying he's been cleared to do everything outside of full-contact drills and playing in scrimmages.

In other (mostly injury-related) news,

  • Evgeni Malkin has declared his surgically repaired right knee to be at "90 percent" health. Malkin suffered joint anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and medial collateral ligament (MCL) tears on February 4 against Buffalo and underwent surgery six days later. Without Crosby in the lineup, Malkin becomes much more vital to the Penguins' chances of having a successful season. Where the staff may be careful with many of the other injuries, look for Malkin to be tested early and often in order to prove his fitness.
  • Dustin Jeffrey, who also suffered a torn ACL last season, has been cleared to practice without contact. Jeffrey was more of a question than Malkin entering camp, but the young forward should be able to participate in full-contact drills soon and has a very strong chance of making the Penguins' opening-day roster.
  • Brooks Orpik underwent hernia surgery and will be limited at the start of camp, according to Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma.
  • Craig Adams, who underwent an appendectomy a month ago is cleared to practice and has declared that he is fully fit.
  • At last week's rookie tournament, the Penguins' squad finished with a rather ignominious 0-3 record, being outscored a combined 13-2 by squads from the Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs and Chicago Blackhawks. Defenseman Robert Bortuzzo suffered a right knee injury during the tournament and is being held out of the start of training camp.
  • Today is the first of two consecutive days that the Penguins will make training camp free and open to the public at the Consol Energy Center. Fans were lined up en masse as early as 8:00 AM (h/t to @Nick422) to attend the session and, by all indications, the Pens could expect more fans for the next two practices than some less-fortunate NHL teams could hope for in a game (okay, maybe a preseason game).

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.