Matt Carle Returns To Practice In A Red No-Contact Jersey


Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Matt Carle is getting closer to his return to the ice as he returns to Lightning practice.

If there is anything that the Tampa Bay Lightning and their fans have become accustomed to dealing with from season to season, it is the nasty, little injury bug. We all know that he spreads his love among the various teams in the NHL, but it always seems as if he has a taste for Lightning blue.

This is why it brings us great satisfaction to know that this season, the team has been able to spit in the face of the injury bug and maintain their course towards the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs despite the numerous injuries they have been forced to contend with.

Speaking of those injuries, the Tampa Bay Lightning got a little bit of a booster today. Tampa Bay Lightning Beat Writer Bryan Burns tweeted out a picture from today’s team practice that saw one of our players who has been recovering from that nasty little injury bug and is getting closer to a return; Matt Carle.

Lightning defenseman Matt Carle has been sidelined since the Lightning’s 3-2 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on January 15th when he suffered what we would later come to find out was a torn abductor muscle. The injury would require surgery to repair, and would call for the thirty year old Alaskan native to miss 6-8 weeks.

If you fast forward until today, we are just about at the six week mark. As you can imagine, being that he returned to the ice in a red no-contact jersey, he is not going to be ready to take the ice against the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday, but we are at least headed in the right direction.

A little later in the afternoon, Burns tweeted out another update on Carle, which supports the assumption that we made above; there is still a little work that needs to be done before Carle will be ready to return to the ice in full form.

Matt Carle is not everyone’s favorite defenseman. While we will concede that he has been responsible for his fair share of blunders on the ice, he has taken a much larger than deserved piece of the flak pie since the Lightning traded defenseman Eric Brewer to the Anaheim Ducks back in November for a Third Round Pick in the 2015 NHL Draft.

On the flip side, numbers do not lie…Carle has done his job on the ice. He makes plays and on more than one occasion, helps the puck find its way to the back of the net.

Before being taken out back in January, Carle had played in 46 games for the Lightning. In that amount of time, he was able to score 4 goals and 10 assists for a total of 14 points alongside his plus-10 rating.

There is still plenty of work to be done this season. The next twenty games will determine where the Tampa Bay Lightning will be standing when the post season rolls around, and if the team has anything to say about it, they would like to be sitting right around the top when the final buzzer sounds.

To that end, it will be nice to get back one of the pieces of the puzzle that has been missing from the picture for far too long.

Next: NHL Trade Rumors: Strengthening the Lightning Defense

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