Sunday, May 27, 2018
Tampa Bay Lightning

Dana Tyrell adds another injury to Tampa Bay Lightning total

BRANDON — Forgive Lightning coach Guy Boucher if he believes unnatural forces are gathering against his team.

That's what happens when nine players are out because of injuries.

"The hockey gods," Boucher said, "are whipping us left and right."

The latest casualty is right wing Dana Tyrell, who left Monday's practice at the Ice Sports Forum early with what is believed a knee problem.

Add the loss of left wing Ryan Malone, out with an upper-body injury sustained during Saturday's 4-3 victory over the Coyotes, and the team was down to 11 forwards and six defensemen before wing Mike Angelidis and defenseman Evan Oberg were called up from AHL Norfolk.

"I can't even tell you which one is upper body, lower body, the back of the body, the top of the head, we've got them all," Boucher said of all the injuries. "To me, it's just a blur right now."

To say Tampa Bay is looking forward to the healing powers of the Wednesday-Sunday All-Star break is an understatement.

In fact, Boucher said he expects Malone and forwards Ryan Shannon (knee) and Tom Pyatt (leg) to be ready to go when the team reunites on Monday.

He also said defenseman Victor Hedman (concussion) is skating hard daily and doing full off-ice workouts.

First though, the Lightning has to get through tonight's game at the Tampa Bay Times Forum with the Blue Jackets; a game Tampa Bay will play with as many as five players brought up in the past few weeks from the minors.

It is a critical contest.

If the Lightning, no matter how much of a long shot, is to mount any kind of playoff run, it cannot lose to teams such as Columbus, last in the West.

A victory would increase Tampa Bay's winning streak to a season-best four and be a nice post-break launching point.

"It's not all of a sudden the game of the year," Boucher said. "But if we can manage (tonight's) game and have something positive come out of it, it would make everybody feel that we've accomplished something."

The Lightning was in a similar situation at the end of December, when it won three straight and believed it had turned a corner. But then came a seven-game losing streak center Steven Stamkos said was "more than humbling.

"I think we've corrected some things in our game that we obviously didn't like," Stamkos said of the team's long-standing malady of slow starts.

And despite "dealing with a lot of adversity right now, injury-wise, we're finding a way," he added. "By no means are we on the way to the Stanley Cup final, but we've got a good thing going right now."

Boucher wants so desperately to keep it going and stomp the injury bug, he joked about a sacrifice to the hockey gods.

"If we could do that, I'd sacrifice a lot," he said.

Seriously, though, "It's the most injuries we've had since I've been here, by far, and it's very taxing," Boucher said. "We've answered with a lot of character, lately. We want to show that we want to survive."

Damian Cristodero can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Vegas envy: Is Tampa Bay ready for a Vegasí birth-to-best story?

Vegas envy: Is Tampa Bay ready for a Vegasí birth-to-best story?

What in the name of the 0-26 Bucs is going on here?The breathtaking Vegas Golden Knights are the greatest expansion team in professional sports history. They are the best (or worst) thing to ever happen to our games, having won 51 times during the re...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Steve Yzermanís summer plans: Make the Lightning better

Steve Yzermanís summer plans: Make the Lightning better

TAMPA — Captain Steven Stamkos said the Lightning's window for contending for a Stanley Cup championship is not closing."I think it's wide open," he said Thursday, one day after the Lightning lost Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final to the C...
Published: 05/25/18
When will the Lightning run out of wait-til-next-years?

When will the Lightning run out of wait-til-next-years?

TAMPA — Disbelief will eventually give way to acceptance.The Lightning isn't there yet.It isn't there yet in a lot of ways.Will it ever be?Just wondering.Really, what guarantees are there?Late Wednesday, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechki...
Published: 05/24/18
Fight off the frustration, Lightning, and donít panic

Fight off the frustration, Lightning, and donít panic

TAMPA — Don't change a thing.Don't blow it up. Don't fire anyone. Don't overreact.Thursday was not an easy day in Lightning Land. It was the day after the end of a season that ended much too soon. It was a day when bags were packed, questions w...
Published: 05/24/18
Lightning journal: Ryan Callahan, among others, played hurt

Lightning journal: Ryan Callahan, among others, played hurt

TAMPA — Not surprisingly, several Lightning players went through the playoffs with what general manager Steve Yzerman called "significant injuries."He would not elaborate Thursday on who they were, though he said that information will be made p...
Published: 05/24/18
Lightning fans leaving Game 7 early: Understandable or bad form?

Lightning fans leaving Game 7 early: Understandable or bad form?

TAMPA — Lightning fans were heading for the exits with three minutes remaining in Tampa Bay's 4-0 loss to Washington Wednesday in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final. Understandable given the disappointment of not reaching the Stanley C...
Published: 05/24/18
The single biggest reason Tampa Bay isnít headed to the Stanley Cup final

The single biggest reason Tampa Bay isnít headed to the Stanley Cup final

TAMPA — Washington is on to Vegas. The Lightning is not. So we asked the Times' Lightning coverage team for the single biggest reason Tampa Bay isn't headed to the Stanley Cup final. Here's their answers:Roger Mooney, staff writer: Th...
Published: 05/24/18
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Scoring drought brings Lightning season to a close

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Scoring drought brings Lightning season to a close

The Lightning will miss out on the Stanley Cup final after being shut out by the Capitals in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final. The Bolts were the highest-scoring team during the regular season but failed to score in almost all of the final eigh...
Published: 05/24/18
Postgame reactions from Lightningís Game 7 loss to the Capitals

Postgame reactions from Lightningís Game 7 loss to the Capitals

The Lightning was shut out once in the first 97 games of the season, the playoffs included. Then it was shut out during the last two games of the Eastern Conference final, including 4-0 on Wednesday to the Capitals in Game 7.Here are some postgame re...
Published: 05/24/18
Lightning journal: A rare fight to this finish

Lightning journal: A rare fight to this finish

TAMPA — After Alex Ovechkin's goal 62 seconds into Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final Wednesday, the next highlight was an extended fight between Lightning D Braydon Coburn and Capitals RW Tom Wilson, with a two-minute break for them to spe...
Published: 05/23/18
Updated: 05/24/18