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Lightning's Bishop optimistic after hit to head

OTTAWA — Ben Bishop said the only lingering effect Thursday night from being inadvertently kicked in the head by teammate Nikita Kucherov was a "bit of a headache."

That's saying something as the Lightning's No. 1 goaltender, who some consider a league MVP candidate, left a 5-3 loss to the Senators 1:49 into the game after a play that caused the sellout crowd of 19,757 at the Canadian Tire Centre to groan in sympathy.

Bishop, who spent several minutes on the ice before being replaced by Anders Lindback, is not even ruling out practicing today in Montreal.

"No dizziness," Bishop said. "I just felt real weak after I got hit. It's one of those things. You're not expecting to get hit in the back of the head. But as the game went on, I felt better.

"Hopefully, I wake up (today) and feel good and am able to practice."

Less enthusiastic about his prospects was center Valtteri Filppula, who left early in the second period with what appeared to be a left hip injury after a collision with Ottawa defenseman Eric Gryba.

"I've been better," said the 19-goal scorer, who skated one more shift before calling it a night.

The Lightning (31-18-5) lost a second straight game in regulation for the first time since Dec. 3 and looked bad doing it. That is until the second half of a third period in which it had 23 shots on goal and got goals from Tyler Johnson, on a shorthanded breakaway, and Victor Hedman.

"We lost two of our top players, but that's not why we lost the game," coach Jon Cooper said. "We just got outplayed."

Captain Marty St. Louis pushed aside suggestions Bishop's injury sidetracked the team, but it was hard to overlook the implications of perhaps losing a such a key player.

Bishop dove to try to poke-check a puck from Ottawa's Mika Zibanejad. They collided and Kucherov, trailing the play, could not avoid Bishop and caught him in the back of the head with the side of his left foot.

With Bishop down, play continued and Marc Methot shot into an empty net for a 1-0 lead.

"I saw him in the last second," Kucherov said. "I tried to go on my right leg and lift my left leg. I didn't know I hit him because I didn't feel it. Then they score a goal, and I look around and I saw him just lying down."

Bishop was on the ice several minutes while being looked at by head medical trainer Tommy Mulligan. He skated off on his own but did not return to the bench.

"I just didn't feel good at all, kind of real weak," Bishop said. "I've got my bearings now."

Senators 2 2 1 5
Lightning 0 1 2 3

First Period1, Ottawa, Methot 5 (Zibanejad, Spezza), 1:49. 2, Ottawa, E.Karlsson 13 (Spezza, Michalek), 19:34. PenaltiesHedman, TB (hooking), 2:34; Ceci, Ott (holding), 7:57.

Second Period3, Tampa Bay, Killorn 13 (Kucherov, Hedman), 3:10. 4, Ottawa, Smith 10, 6:25. 5, Ottawa, Turris 18 (Ryan), 18:40. PenaltiesNone.

Third Period6, Ottawa, Ryan 20 (Turris, MacArthur), 6:55. 7, Tampa Bay, Johnson 17 (Palat), 12:54 (sh). 8, Tampa Bay, Hedman 11 (St. Louis, Palat), 17:08. PenaltiesRyan, Ott (goaltender interference), 4:35; Barberio, TB (high-sticking), 11:53. Shots on GoalTampa Bay 7-8-23—38. Ottawa 12-10-6—28. Power-play opportunitiesTampa Bay 0 of 2; Ottawa 0 of 2. GoaliesTampa Bay, Bishop (1 shots-0 saves), Lindback 5-11-1 (1:49 first, 27-23). Ottawa, Anderson 18-10-7 (38-35).

Lightning's Bishop optimistic after hit to head 01/30/14 [Last modified: Friday, January 31, 2014 12:33am]

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