Perhaps dear readers will show pity on the WVU grad who was forced to watch a Rich Rodriguez Michigan Football Show during breakfast. Then again, consider this WVU grad failed to ask Penguins coach DAN BYLSMA on Friday about D BROOKS ORPIK, who is on this exhibition-season ending trip — well, perhaps this WVU grad deserves no pity. Anyway, an update after practice at the JLA, which lasted more than 90 minutes and didn’t feature C SIDNEY CROSBY (hip) or RW ARRON ASHAM (upper body):
• Orpik missed a third straight day of activity with a groin injury. Bylsma said this injury is on the opposite side of where Orpik underwent offseason surgery in the torso area. Orpik could return to practice Tuesday.
I steer you toward a conversation he and I had about 10 days ago. He talked of needing to set aside 40 minutes of additional time to properly stretch the area on which he was operated. That gives a pretty good idea of how serious Orpik has taken his recovery. Of all the Penguins, Orpik is the most finely tuned when it comes to his body being a machine. He also is a warrior, but I’m curious as to how he will deal with driving a car that appears to lack all the cylinders firing properly.
• Crosby is unlikely to play Sunday afternoon at Detroit. Bylsma wouldn’t say he was out, but his facial expression strongly suggested Crosby would sit the final exhibition game. However, regarding both Crosby and Orpik, Bylsma did hint that neither is expected to miss the regular-season opener Thursday at home against Philadelphia.
• The Penguins have no update on Asham, who was re-evaluated today after leaving the game at Chicago on Saturday with an upper-body injury. He was favoring the left shoulder in a United Center hallway, but was not sporting a brace or support device. Also, he remains with the team, which is a good sign. A serious injury likely would have placed him on a plane headed for Pittsburgh.
• Lines at practice, for what it’s worth:
As I told a media colleague during the session: “I’m not liking that lineup against the Flyers.”
Trib hockey scribe Josh Yohe has an Atlantic Division preview coming Sunday. Check that out. Also, be on the lookout for a few tasty treats this week as we gear up for the opening faceoff.