Saturday, December 16, 2017
Tampa Bay Lightning

Lecavalier foot injury a fracture

TAMPA — Lightning captain Vinny Lecavalier will not accompany the team on its three-game road trip through Canada while nursing what is believed a minor fracture in his left foot.

The team and Lecavalier only said he has a lower-body injury.

"Definitely disappointing," said the center, who was hurt March 12 when he collided with Panthers D Erik Gudbrandon. The injury apparently is near or at the bone bruise he has played with since Feb. 2, when hit by a deflected slap shot from teammate Sami Salo.

"A little bit of a waiting game," Lecavalier added, "and then work out hard and be ready to play."

Lecavalier could be out up to three weeks, GM Steve Yzerman has said. Using that timetable, Lecavalier would return April 2 at home against Florida.

When he does, he might wear some extra padding.

Lecavalier, who last season missed 18 games with a broken hand caused by an opponent's shot, said he will consider wearing double padding in his gloves and polypropylene-graphite composite shot-blockers on the outside of his skates.

If not this season, "I'll think about it this summer," he said.

In the meantime, Lecavalier and wife Caroline have their third child, newborn Amelia, at home to keep them busy.

"It takes your mind off (the injury) a little bit," Lecavalier said. "When I go home I can kind of get away from it, I guess."

200: C Steven Stamkos became the fourth-youngest NHL player to reach 200 goals when he scored an empty-netter against the Flyers with three seconds remaining.

Stamkos, at 23 years, 41 days, was older than only Wayne Gretzky, who reached 200 goals at 21 years, 256 days; Mario Lemieux (22 years, 148 days); and Dale Hawerchuk (22 years, 266 days).

"I don't think it's a huge milestone but it's nice," Stamkos said. "It wasn't a highlight reel goal by any means, but we'll take that."

WISE WORDS: RW Dana Tyrell said it would have been easy in February to pout when demoted to AHL Syracuse. But advice from Lightning teammates Marty St. Louis and Nate Thompson kept him focused.

"If I have to go down I have to go down swinging and do my best to get back up," to the NHL, Tyrell said was the word he got. "They told me to go down fighting and take it kind of like a conditioning stint and get your confidence back. That's what I did."

"He's still a young guy. He's got a lot of hockey ahead of him," Thompson said. "I told him to stay positive, go down there and make the best of it."

Tyrell, 23, had five goals and eight points in 15 games for the Crunch. He has an assist and is plus-2 in two games since his return to Tampa Bay, playing on a line with C Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat.

"I just told him keep fighting," St. Louis said. "Don't feel sorry for yourself."

ODDS AND ENDS: Flyers D Kimmo Timonen turned 38 and played his 1,000th NHL game. … Flyers and former Lightning LW Ruslan Fedotenko was honored as part of Tampa Bay's 20th anniversary celebration. … Lightning D Matt Carle played his 500th NHL game. … Defensemen Brian Lee and Marc-Andre Bergeron, and RW Pierre-Cedric Labrie were scratched.

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