Crosby is getting better but still no timetable in place for Pens star’s return

Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is making progress in his recovery from a concussion but doctors said there is no timeline for his return to action.

PITTSBURGH — Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is making progress in his recovery from a concussion but doctors said there is no timeline for his return to action.

The NHL superstar was flanked by Pittsburgh general manager Ray Shero and two concussion experts at a news conference Wednesday to update Crosby’s health status.

Dr. Michael Collins said Crosby’s recovery is coming along but is not there yet.

“I don’t look at concussion as the bogeyman here,” Collins said. “I see this as a manageable injury and we’re making progress in Sid’s case and I anticipate Sid returning to hockey and playing well in the future.

“But I can guarantee you that we are not going to make any mistakes in this case. And before Sid goes back to playing, we’re going to make sure he’s 100 per cent recovered, no ifs, ands or buts about it.”

Training camp opens Sept. 16 and Pittsburgh plays its first regular-season game Oct. 6. Doctors said they don’t know whether Crosby will be ready for the opener.

Crosby said it’s been a “tough road” but he feels good mentally and never considered retirement. He took part in his normal off-season workout program but his headaches returned when he got to 90 per cent exertion in his workouts.

“Maybe I could get by with 90 per cent, maybe I couldn’t, but I’m not going to roll the dice on that,” Crosby said.

Crosby, 24, hasn’t played in a game since Jan. 5, missing the rest of the regular season and Pittsburgh’s first-round playoff loss to Tampa Bay.

He sustained hits in consecutive games in early January before being diagnosed with the concussion. He flirted with returning during the playoffs before a series of setbacks kept him off the ice.

He said that after he suffered the concussion, driving and watching TV was a problem. Watching a video with the team was also bad.

“These are things we do every day,” he said.

“It’s a difficult thing to go though and trust me I’d love to have answers myself sometimes when I was going through that but it’s not as easy as that . . .It’s a roller-coaster,” he added.

Crosby was in the midst of an MVP-type season before the injury, amassing 66 points (32 goals, 34 assists) in 41 games.