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Mathieu Joseph returns to lineup as J.T. Miller goes on I.R.

Mathieu Joseph has missed the past six games with a lower-body injury.
Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Mathieu Joseph (7) celebrate his goal after beating New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) to tie the score at 1 to 1 during second period action at Amalie Arena in Tampa Thursday evening (11/08/18). DIRK SHADD   |   Times
Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Mathieu Joseph (7) celebrate his goal after beating New York Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner (40) to tie the score at 1 to 1 during second period action at Amalie Arena in Tampa Thursday evening (11/08/18). DIRK SHADD | Times
Published Dec. 29, 2018
Updated Dec. 30, 2018

TAMPA — Mathieu Joseph has impeccable timing.

After the Lightning placed forward J.T. Miller on injured reserve Saturday, Joseph returned to the lineup on the same day. Joseph missed the past six games with a lower-body injury.

He made it back just in time to face his hometown Canadiens.

"I feel like I have improved a lot the last couple of days," Joseph said after morning skate. "That break for Christmas definitely helped."

Before the injury, Joseph tallied nine goals and four assists. His nine goals put him among the top rookie skaters. Joseph, 21, has provided spark and energy while primarily skating on the third and fourth lines this season.

He came into training camp on the roster bubble, but he has spent the entire season with the Lightning. He has ultimately provided more depth for a team already filled to the brim with talent at forward.

Miller is week-to-week, Lighting general manager Julien BriseBois said. With Miller out of the lineup, the Lightning loses a forward who has scored seven goals and tallied 19 assists this season.

Contact Nick Kelly at nkelly@tampabay.com. Follow @_NickKelly.