UPDATE: Sidney Crosby has been diagnosed with the mumps and will miss Monday night's game against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Penguins medical staff believes Crosby will no longer be infectious on Monday, but can not confirm whether he was infectious when he participated in practice on Friday. The team's medical cleared Crosby for Friday's practice.
ORIGINAL: You may have heard that mumps is going around the NHL, and that one of the chief symptoms of the disease is severe swelling of the saliva glands, particularly the parotid gland in the cheek. In the simplest terms, mumps give you a big ole cheek.
So consider that, and then consider this picture of Sidney Crosby taken Friday morning:
The right side of Sidney Crosby's face was ... different ... today: pic.twitter.com/8gVmXU8c19— Seth Rorabaugh (@emptynetters) December 12, 2014
It's a little more subtle when you watch the video, but there is definitely some swelling going on in Crosby's left cheek, and the timing with the NHL's mumps outbreak definitely makes you wonder. But it's just a wonder, because he's playing Friday night against Calgary, and there are a million ailments that could make your face swell like that -- maybe even something as simple as dental work.
Crosby missed practice on Thursday with what the team called a "sickness," but he wouldn't be in the lineup or even in the locker room if team doctors knew he had mumps. So we'll have to believe him when he says he doesn't.