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Report: Crosby’s contract may not be able to be insured

Pittsburgh Penguins v Philadelphia Flyers - Game Six

PHILADELPHIA, PA - APRIL 22: Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins skates toward his bench late in the third period with his team losing 5-1 to the Philadelphia Flyers in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Wells Fargo Center on April 22, 2012 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Flyers won the game 5-1 to eliminate the Penguins from the playoffs. (Photo by Paul Bereswill/Getty Images)

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Sidney Crosby’s monster contract extension of 12-years, $104 million didn’t come without some questions. One of the biggest was how the Pittsburgh Penguins would be able to get such a huge deal for a guy with concussion problems insured. Turns out it may not be possible.

Rob Rossi of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports the Penguins may not get Crosby’s new deal covered by insurance, meaning they’re on the hook for big bucks no matter what.

Crosby, 24, has missed all but 63 games the past two seasons because of concussion symptoms. He and the Penguins agreed to a 12-year contract worth $104.4 million — all of it guaranteed. The team will present the contract to the league Sunday for approval.

Insurance companies offer teams protection against career-ending injuries, but Crosby’s concussion history is considered a pre-existing condition. If Crosby cannot finish his contract because of a concussion-related injury, he will still be paid in full, but the Penguins would not receive assistance from an insurance policy on the deal, sources said.

That would be quite a bit of money virtually flushed away. Good thing for the Penguins they’re now playing in a new arena and they’re a team that brings in a lot of cash as it is thanks to ticket sales and merchandise. That means should Crosby wind up getting hurt again and put his career in doubt, his contract won’t bankrupt the team.

Rossi also reports Crosby’s deal will be more front-loaded so as to pay him up sooner rather than later.