Sidney Crosby in Penguins' lineup

ByCraig Custance ESPN logo
Wednesday, October 1, 2014

DETROIT -- Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby will make his preseason debut Wednesday night against the Red Wings in the team's final game of training camp.

Crosby missed games earlier in the preseason because of an undisclosed injury and later because of the death of his grandmother.

After Wednesday's game, the Penguins don't play again until Thursday, Oct. 9, when they host the Anaheim Ducks in their season opener.

"Ideally you'd get at least a couple [games], but that's the scenario," Crosby said after Wednesday's morning skate. "I'm not going to complain about it. That's the way it is. I'm going to try and make the most of this game and get ready for the season."

New Penguins coach Mike Johnston has had to implement his system without his top two centers in Crosby and injured Evgeni Malkin. Pairings in Wednesday's practice indicated that Crosby would skate on a line with new winger Patric Hornqvist.

"It's going to be good, for sure. [Crosby]'s ready to play, he's been anxious to play," Johnston said. "Certainly having him with our lineup gives us just that punch up front that we need."

Malkin remains out, but a source tells's Scott Burnside that Malkin's injury issues are not serious and that he isn't far from returning to action. Team officials are being cautious, and it remains unclear whether Malkin will be available for the Penguins' season opener.

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