Sidney Crosby ruled out for Sunday’s bout with Boston Bruins; ready for ‘good chunk of practices’

Well, NBC's erection has probably subsided.

After Sunday's Game of the Week between the Boston Bruins and Pittsburgh Penguins was being talked up as the potential return of Sidney Crosby — analyst Jeremy Roenick said "it gives a jolt to not only the Penguins, but the fans in Pittsburgh, Boston, Toronto, everywhere" — the Penguins captain won't return this weekend.

Said Crosby to the media after today's practice, via Sam Kasan of the Penguins:

"No, I'm not playing," Crosby said. "The good thing is that we have a good chunk of practices next week so we'll see how that goes. Hopefully, it's soon."

Crosby, who has been out of the lineup since Dec. 6 with concussion-like symptoms and a neck injury, hasn't had any setbacks or symptoms since beginning contact and is pleased with his progress.

"I have to make sure that I'm ready and responsible out there," he said. "That being said, it always takes time. … I need to get to another level as far as the extent of the physicality out there. There's been nothing that's really alarming. I'm really happy with the way I've felt leading up to this point."

Crosby returned to full contact practice on Tuesday, and there was plenty of speculation that Sunday would be the "target" for his return. But after being cleared, Crosby made it clear that Sunday would be the "soonest" he could return, rather than the game in which he expected to be back.

The Penguins don't play again until Thursday night at the New York Rangers, a team that Coach Dan Bylsma believes they can catch with a healthy Crosby.

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