Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

J,T. Brown expected to miss rest of Lightning's first-round series

Lightning wing J.T. Brown grimaces moments after blocking a shot during Game 2. He is out with an upper-body injury.

DIRK SHADD | Times

Lightning wing J.T. Brown grimaces moments after blocking a shot during Game 2. He is out with an upper-body injury.

DETROIT — The Lightning has been dealt another blow up front, with forward J.T. Brown expected to miss the rest of the first-round series against the Red Wings, and possibly more, due to an upper-body injury sustained Friday during Game 2.

Brown, 25, a key cog on the shutdown line and penalty kill, got hurt in the first period while blocking a shot near the blue line. He didn't return. Brown was arguably the team's most consistent forward this season, with a career bests in goals (eight), points (22) and plus-minus (plus-16) this season.

"It's our third playoffs together, and if you're going to pull that unsung-hero tag, he's definitely at the top of the list," coach Jon Cooper said. "He won't light the scoreboard up in points, but you're not going to find too many more bigger gamers than J.T. Brown. That's a tough loss for us. But in the mantra of the (Steven) Stamkoses and (Anton) Stralmans, let's just keep this going and make sure that wasn't J.T. Brown's last game."

For tonight's Game 3, expect RW Erik Condra or RW Jonathan Marchessault to take Brown's spot. Both Condra and Marchessault have been scratched the first two games.

Not done: The Lightning feels good, and it should, after taking a 2-0 series lead; teams in that position win 86 percent of best-of-seven series (298-48), according to the Elias Sports Bureau. But as Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill said Saturday, "the series isn't over after two games."

"We haven't really accomplished anything yet," Lightning D Matt Carle said. "We held serve, winning our two home games. We can expect a new level of desperation from them. We've got to be ready for that."

Carry over? The Lightning wasn't pleased with Red Wings LW Justin Abdelkader repeatedly punching RW Mike Blunden while he was down on the ice during the brawl in the final minute of Friday's Game 2.

Abdelkader said the day after that he was at the bottom of the pile after getting jumped from behind. He doesn't anticipate retribution.

"I think lots of emotions run high in the playoffs, at the end of a game there," Abdelkader told the Detroit News. "It's been a physical series. I think each game kind of takes its own shape. I don't expect anything else. I think both teams are focused on winning games."

Bish please: While G Ben Bishop has seemed to fly under the radar in the first two games, he has played a key role, especially in a penalty kill unit that has gone 9-for-10. Bishop has stopped 64 of 68 possible shots.

"He was a big factor in Game 1; I don't know if we win that without him," Cooper said. "Our penalty kill has been getting a few accolades, but who is the guy with all the saves back there? It's Ben Bishop."

What they're saying: Funny line by C Valtteri Filppula, asked if he expects an angry Red Wings team in Game 3. "I think they've been pretty angry so far." And on the home crowd in Tampa the first two games? "I'm surprised there wasn't more red," Filppula said. "But happily surprised."

.FAST FACTS

Watch party tonight

Fans are invited to a Lightning watch party at Channelside for tonight's Game 3 against the Red Wings. Festivities begin at 5 and last until the conclusion of the game, which starts at 7. There will be food and drink specials, and the game will be broadcast on a 9- by 12-foot LED television.

J,T. Brown expected to miss rest of Lightning's first-round series 04/16/16 [Last modified: Saturday, April 16, 2016 10:59pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Dave Andreychuk going into Hall of Fame

    Blogs

    For Dave Andreychuk, the wait is finally over.

    Dave Andreychuk helped lead the Lightning to its only Stanley Cup in 2004.
  2. UPDATE: Rays finalizing deal to get SS Hechavarria for 2 minor-leaguers

    Blogs

    Hechavarria is a two-time Gold Glove finalist who could help settle the Rays sometimes leaky infield defense.

    Adeiny Hechavarria is a two-time Gold Glove finalist who could help settle the Rays sometimes leaky infield defense.
  3. Timmy Claus is coming to town

    Blogs

    The circus is coming to town.

    Well, close enough.

    Timmy the Tebow is coming to Tampa Bay.

    It’s true. At least it could be. St. Timothy has been promoted by the New York Mets to high Class-A Port St. Lucie. If he stays promoted, Tebow should be in Tampa Bay for eight games beginning August 10 …

    Coming soon: Tim Tebow will hit Tampa Bay in August.
  4. Ranking Malik Zaire among 2017's top transfer quarterbacks

    Blogs

    The Florida Gators' Malik Zaire is among many transfers who could become starters at their new school. Here's how he stacks up in our rankings of top transfer quarterbacks:

  5. Lightning re-sign Yanni Gourde to two-year, one-way deal

    Blogs

    Just three years ago, Yanni Gourde was fightning to stay in pro hockey.

    Yanni Gourde seized his moment with six goals in 20 games as a callup last season.