Paquette could return tonight; Vasilevskiy in net
Center Cedric Paquette participated in line rushes this morning and could return tonight.
It's significant progress from how discouraged Paquette felt Tuesday.
"We found something," Paquette said.
Paquette, out since a nagging left ankle injury got worse Oct 24 in Chicago, has had trouble wearing a skate with a cut on his ankle. They tried "100" differnt kind of pads to no avail, but finally found one that works recently. Paquette skated over an hour Wednesday with not much pain and that's why he could play after missing five games.
Wing Jonathan Drouin (lower body) is still out, not feeling the right amount of improvement. "Not skating like I want," he said. Coach Jon Cooper said there's been no setbacks, this just takes time.
Paquette's return could ruin the potential of Tye McGinn playing against older brother, Sabres wing Jamie McGinn. Tye, called up Sunday, faced his younger brother Brock Sunday in Carolina and catch up with Jamie Wednesday. McGinn said no matter how it turns out this week has been surreal. "You can't put it into words," he said.
Andrei Vasilevskiy will start in net. Cooper has said he wanted a "1 and 1A" tandem with Vasilevskiy and Ben Bishop, so this makes sense. Vasilevskiy made 32 saves in a 4-3 win in his season debut Sunday against Carolina. D Nikita Nesterov will be scratched.
The Lightning also switched up the lines again. Valterri Filppula is with Steven Stamkos (who is at center) and Ondrej Palat. Ryan Callahan moved down to a third line with Namestnikov-Paquette. Brown is with Boyle and Condra.