But Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported on Friday night that while the team can insure the contract for a variety of injuries, according to NHL sources the Penguins "cannot insure themselves against a concussion-related early retirement" for Crosby.
Crosby, 24, has missed all but 63 games the past two seasons because of concussion symptoms. He and the Penguins agreed to a 12-year contract worth $104.4 million — all of it guaranteed. The team will present the contract to the league Sunday for approval.
Insurance companies offer teams protection against career-ending injuries, but Crosby's concussion history is considered a pre-existing condition. If Crosby cannot finish his contract because of a concussion-related injury, he will still be paid in full, but the Penguins would not receive assistance from an insurance policy on the deal, sources said.
[Nicholas J. Cotsonika: Sidney Crosby extension was right move for Pens]
Is it a matter of timing? Can the Penguins get Crosby's deal insured down the line? Kevin Allen of USA Today reported this week:
They can immediately get Crosby's contract insured for any catastrophe other than a concussion-related calamity. Plus, I'm told that if Crosby continues to play concussion-free, they eventually might be able to insure the contract for a head injury, even though the rates could be quite high.
Check out Rossi's piece for more about how Crosby's potential health/contract issues are not equal to those of Mario Lemieux in the late 1990s.
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