PITTSBURGH - Sidney Crosby's sprained ankle has knocked the reigning MVP out of this weekend's NHL all-star game.
The Pittsburgh Penguins placed their captain on the injured list Monday, meaning he will be sidelined at least through the all-star festivities scheduled for Saturday and Sunday in Atlanta.
Crosby, the leading vote-getter, injured his right ankle during the Penguins' 3-0 loss to Tampa Bay on Friday, and the preliminary diagnosis was a high ankle sprain. The ligament injury usually requires a long recovery.
Because there is still swelling in Crosby's ankle, he won't be re-examined by team doctors until Tuesday.
Other athletes who have had a high ankle sprain - it is common in the NFL - say it is frustrating because rehabilitation alone can't cure it and considerable rest is needed.
Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury, for example, has been out since Dec. 6 with a high ankle sprain and is not yet ready to return. When Fleury was hurt, it was estimated he would return in six to eight weeks.
The move allowed the Penguins to add an extra forward for their final two games before the all-star break. The club recalled forwards Chris Minard, Tim Brent and Jonathan Filewich from their Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (AHL) farm club.
Forward Adam Hall (groin) also went on the injured list, and defenceman Ryan Lannon was returned to Wilkes-Barre after not playing in any games during his two weeks with Pittsburgh.
Minard, signed by the Penguins in July, has played professionally since 2002 but has never been in the NHL. He led Wilkes-Barre with 17 goals. Brent, who played in 15 games with Anaheim last season, was Wilkes-Barre's leading scorer with 35 points, including seven goals.
Filewich, a third-round draft pick in 2003, had seven goals and 10 assists at Wilkes-Barre, a falloff from his 56-point season there a year ago.