TAMPA — Lightning coach Guy Boucher gave no specific details about the lower-body injury goalie Mathieu Garon sustained Tuesday night.
But the bits and pieces provided painted a bleak picture that overshadowed the 7-3 loss to the Senators at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.
Garon, 12-3-2 during Tampa Bay's playoff push, left 3:54 into the first period after doing a split to stop an Erik Karlsson wrist shot. He will have an MRI exam today.
Boucher declined to say what the injury is but said "anything is possible" when asked if it is potentially serious and that the Lightning "most probably" will have to add a goalie for Thursday's showdown with the Capitals.
"Just another episode," Boucher said. "It's one of those years you have to battle through."
If Garon's injury is serious, general manager Steve Yzerman could make a waiver claim for Marty Turco. The 36-year-old free agent was signed by the Bruins to a one-year, $600,000 deal because of the injury to Tuukka Rask but first must clear waivers at noon today.
If the injury is short term, perhaps AHL Norfolk's Dustin Tokarski or Jaroslav Janus gets a call to join 42-year-old Dwayne Roloson.
"It's another test. We have to respond," center Steven Stamkos said. "No one is feeling sorry for us right now. We have to find a way to step up. We have confidence in Roli. We know he's done it in the past and he can do it again. That's what we expect from him."
Roloson had little chance on the three goals he allowed in a first period in which the Lightning did not show up.
Tampa Bay (31-29-6) — which lost its four-game winning streak but remained 10th in the East, four points out of the eighth and final playoff spot — rallied twice. But it was foiled by two Ottawa power-play goals after what Tampa Bay considered weak penalties.
Second-period goals by Ryan Shannon and Tim Wallace made it 3-2. But with Keith Aulie in the penalty box for roughing after a fight with Colin Greening, Karlsson scored to restore the two-goal lead.
After Stamkos scored his league-best 48th goal 5:41 into the third, Milan Michalek scored with Stamkos in the box for goaltender interference to make it 5-3 with 7:48 left. Michalek also scored two empty-net goals for a hat trick.
"I don't think there was even any contact on that play," Stamkos said. "I actually thought the penalty was on them."
"This is where I get fined or don't get fined by the league," said Boucher, who added, "I'd like to swing something."
It wasn't clear whether he was reacting to the penalties, Garon's injury or both.
First Period—1, Ottawa, Gonchar 3 (Greening, Cowen), 9:38. 2, Ottawa, Greening 13 (Michalek, Kuba), 17:37. 3, Ottawa, Turris 7, 18:30. Penalties—Tampa Bay bench, served by Connolly (too many men), 1:43; Konopka, Ott (holding), 11:50.
Second Period—4, Tampa Bay, Shannon 3 (Pyatt, Connolly), 1:24. 5, Tampa Bay, Wallace 2 (Wyman, Pyatt), 7:12. 6, Ottawa, Karlsson 16, 11:58 (pp). Penalties—Greening, Ott, major (fighting), 10:57; Aulie, TB, served by Connolly, minor-major (roughing, fighting), 10:57.
Third Period—7, Tampa Bay, Stamkos 48 (Purcell, Malone), 5:41 (pp). 8, Ottawa, Michalek 30 (Alfredsson, Kuba), 12:12 (pp). 9, Ottawa, Michalek 31, 18:33 (en). 10, Ottawa, Michalek 32, 19:53 (en-sh). Penalties—Karlsson, Ott (tripping), 5:11; Stamkos, TB (goaltender interference), 11:16; Gonchar, Ott (holding), 18:56. Shots on Goal—Ottawa 14-7-14—35. Tampa Bay 8-9-11—28. Power-play opportunities—Ottawa 2 of 3; Tampa Bay 1 of 3. Goalies—Ottawa, Bishop 1-0-0 (28 shots-25 saves). Tampa Bay, Garon (3-3), Roloson 8-13-2 (3:54 first, 30-25). A—18,967 (19,204). T—2:32. Referees—Paul Devorski, Frederick L'Ecuyer. Linesmen—Ryan Galloway, Pierre Racicot.