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Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby skates past a play board as he participates in practice with teammates on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011 in Pittsburgh. Crosby will return to the team's lineup on Monday night when the Penguins host the New York Islanders. (Keith Srakocic/AP)
Pittsburgh Penguins' Sidney Crosby skates past a play board as he participates in practice with teammates on Thursday, Nov. 10, 2011 in Pittsburgh. Crosby will return to the team's lineup on Monday night when the Penguins host the New York Islanders. (Keith Srakocic/AP)

Media descends on Pittsburgh for Crosby's return Add to ...

So just how big of a deal is Sidney Crosby’s return to NHL action on Monday night after close to a year on the sidelines thanks to a concussion?

Big enough that two satellite trucks from Pittsburgh television stations were still parked on the sidewalk in front of the Igloo, the Penguins’ old arena, across the street from the new Consol Energy Centre, broadcasting live reports for the 11 p.m. local news on Sunday night. Big enough that the bar in the City Center Marriott Hotel on the other side of the same intersection was filling up at the same hour with sports writers and talkers sent from all over North America to chronicle the big event.

There are already all kinds of newspaper and web site columns on the return of Sid the Kid plus lots of television video. Here’s a local take from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and one from the Post-Gazette.

The Penguins take their morning skate at 10:30 a.m. Monday to prepare for the game against the Islanders at 7 p.m., and the media mob will rival one for a Stanley Cup final. The Islanders will go for a twirl at 11:30 a.m. and here’s what those poor guys are thinking.

Check later with www.globeandmail.com and @dshoalts on Twitter for more from the skates.

Follow on Twitter: @dshoalts

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