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)

Lightning scratches Filppula for missing meeting

Washington Capitals left wing Marcus Johansson (90) keeps the puck away from Tampa Bay Lightning center Valtteri Filppula (51) during the second period of the game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Washington Capitals in Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla. on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016.

WILL VRAGOVIC | Times

Washington Capitals left wing Marcus Johansson (90) keeps the puck away from Tampa Bay Lightning center Valtteri Filppula (51) during the second period of the game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Washington Capitals in Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla. on Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016.

TAMPA — Lightning C Valtteri Filppula was scratched for Wednesday's 4-3 overtime win against the Canadiens, disciplined for missing the team meeting before the morning skate.

"In the end, Val is an unreal pro. He made a mistake," coach Jon Cooper said. "That's it."

It was the first time Filppula, 32, was a healthy scratch in his four seasons with Tampa Bay. The oldest player on the team, Filppula had a point in five of his previous eight games and is third on the team with 24 points. He participated in the morning skate.

His absence created an opening for rookie C Matthew Peca, who was called up from AHL Syracuse on Tuesday and made his NHL debut.

Cooper said Filppula would be in the lineup tonight against the Maple Leafs.

TOUGH CALL: RW Nikita Kucherov had the puck alone with nothing between him and Canadiens G Carey Price late in the third period when the whistle blew and the Lightning was penalized for having too many men on the ice. C Brian Boyle was ruled to have still been on the ice when Kucherov caught up to the puck.

The Lightning had tied the score at 3 less than a minute earlier. Now the Canadiens, who had let a 3-1 third-period lead slip away, were on the power play.

It could have been a huge momentum turn, Boyle said.

"You try to execute a certain play," he said. "It's a matter of a couple of feet, maybe. You try to take advantage of a situation. It's obviously a judgement call."

The Canadiens had two early shots during the two-minute advantage, but the Lightning killed off the penalty.

"Maybe I can get off a little quicker," Boyle said. "If they don't see it, it's a breakaway. Who knows."

WELCOME. MATT: Peca made his NHL debut centering the fourth line. He played 16 shifts, had one shot on goal and had 13:03 of ice time.

"It's Christmas season, that's what we do. We give," Cooper said when asked after the morning skate if Peca would be in the lineup.

Peca, 23, was a seventh-round draft pick in 2011. He has 14 goals and 64 points in 101 AHL games. Peca said he was surprised to get the callup from Syracuse.

"A little bit. A couple of guys have been called up throughout the year. I think it speaks to our depth in Syracuse, and I'm happy to get the call," he said.

Cooper said Peca earned the callup with his play this season.

"He's paid his dues, and now it's time for him to get his shot," Cooper said. "He's got the speed to keep up with this game, and we're playing a fast team. Montreal is fast. To have a little more speed in our lineup is going to help."

Cooper said Peca got stronger as the game went on.

TOP PICK SIGNS: F Brett Howden, the 27th overall pick in the 2016 draft, signed a three-year entry level contract.

Lightning scratches Filppula for missing meeting 12/28/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 28, 2016 11:57pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Peter Budaj, Lightning lose to Devils in shootout; Nikita Kucherov scores

    Lightning Strikes

    NEWARK, N.J. — For Peter Budaj, Tuesday's season debut had a shaky start.

    The Lightning’s Vladislav Namestnikov, right, battles Damon Severson for the puck.
  2. Lightning's Steve Yzerman enjoying Nikita Kucherov's scoring run

    Lightning Strikes

    NEWARK, N.J. — If anyone knows what it is like to be as hot as Nikita Kucherov is right now, it's Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman.

    Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov, of Russia, celebrates after scoring a goal on the New Jersey Devils during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017, in Newark, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
  3. Bucs journal: Offense needs to get off to a faster start

    Bucs

    TAMPA — The past two games have seen the Bucs offense muster furious rallies in the fourth quarter of losses, with 229 yards against the Patriots and a franchise-record 27 points against the Cardinals.

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field before an NFL game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., on Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017.
  4. NFL players, owners hold 'constructive' talks on issues

    Bucs

    NEW YORK — NFL players and owners met Tuesday to discuss social issues, a session Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross called "constructive" and Colts defensive back Darius Butler termed "positive."

    A coalition of advocacy groups 'take a knee' outside of a hotel where members the quarterly NFL league meetings are being held on Tuesday in New York City.  Owners, players and commissioner Roger Goodell are all expected to attend. The activists spoke of having solidarity with athletes and coaches around the country who have also kneeled in protest of racial injustice, especially in policing.
 [Getty Images]
  5. Lightning's Steve Yzerman: Nikita Kucherov 'wants to be great'

    Blogs

    If anyone knows what it is like to be as hot as Nikita Kucherov is right now, it's Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman.

    Nikita Kucherov joined Steve Yzerman, Mario Lemieux and Keith Tkachuk as the only players in the last 30 years to score a goal in each of his team's first six games.