Sidney Crosby medically cleared to practice with Penguins

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

Sidney Crosby is allowed to return to team practices. The question remains when he will return to game action.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby has received medical clearance to resume participation in practice with teammates, according to Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Thursday afternoon.

Molinari previously reported that Crosby was hoping to be medically cleared either on Thursday or Friday.

While the Penguins captain will be allowed to resume practicing with teammates, his return to game action has yet to be determined. Molinari reports that Crosby will not play in either of the team's two remaining regular season games.

Crosby sustained a broken jaw after being hit in the face with a shot on March 30. Since the injury occurred, many speculated that he would attempt to return prior to Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, which will take place sometime next week in Pittsburgh.

It is believed that Crosby's jaw was broken into several pieces, as opposed to a clean break. This required doctors to mend the area with the insertion of titanium plates. Fortunately, Crosby did not need his jaw wired shut. However, he struggled with eating solid foods and consumed meals in liquid form.

This is potentially an issue in terms of his strength and conditioning, as nutrition is a key component to an athlete's training regimen. If he was unable to properly keep up with his nutrition program -- something he mentioned might be an issue -- then he might not be where he wants to be fitness wise.

Of course, any Crosby is better than no Crosby, and his return will be a key addition for what the Penguins are hoping will be an extended playoff run.

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