Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby, considered one of the top players in the league, won't be in Raleigh this week for the NHL All-Star Game, the team confirmed Monday.
In a brief interview Crosby gave before the Penguins' home game against the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday, Crosby had said he hadn't ruled out participating.
Crosby was injured when he took hits to the head in successive games on Jan. 1 and Jan. 5, and he has yet to be cleared for physical activity as he recovers from a concussion.
The news later came up in a telephone conference conducted by the league with All-Star captain Niklas Lidstrom of the Detroit Red Wings and alternate captains Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks.
"Obviously, everything he's done in the league so far, he's lived up to [the hype] times two," St. Louis said. "Not just on the ice but off the ice, too. He's having a great year. It's a tough situation that he can't be there."
Kane, who recently missed eight games with an ankle injury, sounded sympathetic.
"Sometimes rest is better than being part of the game," Kane said.
Crosby has missed the All-Star Game before. He missed the 2009 All-Star Game in Montreal but participated in off-ice activities. He won't this time.
"I know Sidney is very honored to have been selected by the fans to appear in the All-Star Game, and he was happy to attend the festivities two years ago when he couldn't play because of a knee injury," Pittsburgh general manager Ray Shero said in a prepared statement Monday. "However, in this situation - when he has not skated for 21/2 weeks and still has not been cleared to resume physical activity - we think it's best for him to focus totally on his recovery."