Believe it or not, Sidney Crosby is about to enter his ninth season in the NHL. This number might seem a bit high due to the fact he has missed significant time over the last few years due to various injuries. Crosby skated in just 57 games in 2007-08, 41 games in 2010-11 and 22 in 2011-12. When you add in the time he missed last season with a broken jaw, injuries have been a fairly common occurrence.
Crosby has one goal for the 2013-14 season: Stay healthy.
The star forward discussed this topic with the Post-Gazette.
I'm excited to play a full season. I know 82 games, especially in an
Olympicyear when [the NHL schedule] is condensed, is a lot of hockey, but to go through all the different things in a full regular season, those challenges, all those things are exciting.
The biggest thing, though, is to play a full season.
Well said. No one is surprised to hear a player say he wants to stay healthy. Along with hoisting the Cup, that's the same goal every single hockey player has. Considering Crosby has averaged just over 1.41 points-per-game over his first nine seasons in the NHL (665 points in 470 games), his health is vital for both the Penguins and the NHL. The league can't market their biggest star if he's up in the press box.
Given how colorful Crosby's injury history is, the 2013-14 season is an extremely important test for the star. After Crosby suffered yet another setback in 2012-13, there was some discussion over whether he was an injury magnet or some sort of injury-prone skater. That discussion wasn't very fair considering Crosby couldn't do too much about taking a puck to the face, but it does have a bit of merit along the topic of concussions. A healthy campaign would go a long way in proving that Crosby's concussions and detailed injury history are more of a fluke than they are a trend.
Will Crosby be able to avoid the injury bug this season?