Sidney Crosby talks about uncertainty with Malkin, plays outside his contract

Henderson, Nevada – Sidney Crosby was thrilled that the band stayed together, especially because the threat of a summer breakup was so real.

With his teammates from longtime Pittsburgh Penguins and three-time Stanley Cup champion Chris Letang and Evgeny Malkin both heading toward free agency in July, the captain felt nervous.

Crosby admits that in those turbulent days leading up to July 13, he had been texting his colleagues and close friends badly, to check if there was any progress in the negotiations.

However, even after Letang’s six-year re-launch and $36 million take out on July 7, there seemed to be a legitimate possibility that Malkin would walk in.

Crosby took a breather when he extended Malkin to four years and $24.4 million on July 12, just hours before the deadline.

“I was sweating. When this gets close, anything can happen,” Crosby told Elliot Friedman and Jeff Marek while recording 32 ideas Audio notation.

“You know it’s a possibility. You want to think positive, you want to be optimistic, but there’s still a chance that it won’t. So, I think uncertainty is tough. I’m sure it was tough for these guys. It was definitely for me – just not.” I want to go there mentally.

“You don’t want to be on the ice thinking, This might be the last game we play together. But the truth is that it could have been. So it’s great that they are back with us. Yes, it definitely made me sweat.”

Contrary to rumours, Crosby said he has not made overtures to management to make sure the Letang and Malkin deals are finalised.

“It’s pretty obvious how I feel. I mean, it’s not like I have to state it. I think it’s pretty obvious how I feel about these guys,” Crosby said.

The Three Penguins’ superstars enter this season 118 wins shy of becoming the three-time winners of their NHL teammates in history.

Letang will turn 41 when his new contract expires. Malkin will be 39, and Crosby will be 37 when his current contract expires in 2025.

The three could retire together as penguins for life.

“That would be great. I think that’s something we would like to do,” Crosby said.

“The top on the list win together again. That’s our motivation. These guys are connected in this way. They don’t just play for retirement. That’s why they’ve been successful as long as they do.”

Crosby is still performing at an elite level in his mid-30s. He tore 31 goals and collected 84 points in 69 games this past season, then added 10 points in six playoffs.

However he is reluctant to start thinking about NHL life after this decade.

“I think about three more years and then see what happens from there. I know it doesn’t help me to get over that. I know I want to keep playing at a high level,” Crosby said.

“I’ve played a lot of hockey. It’s something that takes a lot of effort. You have to invest in your body because a lot of things have to go right in order to play at an older age. So yeah, I think three years is my focus. From there, I’ll see.” my place “.

Crosby let it be, occasionally, that he thought about what he should do with his life after his playing days were over.

“Your mind tends to go there as you get older, sure. You understand the situation. And it’s a really tough situation because as an athlete you want to be in the moment. You don’t necessarily have to think a lot about the future, but the truth is that it happens a little bit more as you get older. age,” he said.

“So you just have to find the balance between knowing this reality, enjoying the moment, making the most of yourself and enjoying every single day. It’s a great game. It’s the best job in the world, and you want to play for as long as you can.”

When that time comes, Crosby wants to be able to say he’s made the most out of the NHL window.

“I don’t take it for granted. And I love it. So, for me, it’s easy to live with that mindset every day,” Crosby said.

“And I think just having that mindset, when that time comes, I’ll appreciate it. But I want to know I left it all there.”