Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper announced on Wednesday that team captain Martin St. Louis is currently listed as day-to-day with a lower body injury. St. Louis sustained the injury when he blocked a Drew Doughty shot off his foot in the third period of Tuesday’s 5-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings.
St. Louis was not on the ice for Wednesday’s practice, and his status for Thursday’s game against the Minnesota Wild is uncertain. Luckily for the Lightning, however, the injury does not appear to be serious.
“From all indications it’s nothing alarmingly serious,” Cooper said to the media. “We’ll have to wait for the doctors to give us a report.”
St. Louis is off to another blazing start this season. The newly anointed captain has 10 points in the Lightning’s first six games, and was their best skater against the Kings on Tuesday.
Valtteri Filppula filled in for St. Louis on the first powerplay unit in Wednesday’s practice. And should St. Louis miss time, the Lightning have a number of options for who could step up to the top line.
While St. Louis has a track record of playing through minor injuries, it’s also possible that the Lightning will choose to sit him as a precaution. After the game against the Wild, the Lightning have rematches against the Boston Bruins and the Chicago Blackhawks, and they’ll undoubtedly want to be sure St. Louis is healthy for those games.
Another thing to consider is, after Tom Pyatt‘s injury, the Lightning have no available forwards to insert into the lineup. Should St. Louis miss time, that leaves the Lightning with two options: 1. They could dress eleven forwards and seven defensemen, meaning either Keith Aulie or Mark Barberio would get a game in, or, 2. The Lightning could call up a forward from the Syracuse Crunch. The three leading candidates for a call-up are Brett Connolly, Nikita Kucherov, and J.T. Brown.
The Lightning face the Minnesota Wild Thursday night at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. Gametime is 7:30 p.m. EST.
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