TAMPA — For a while, it seemed as if the Mikhail Sergachev who tallied 40 points in 2017-18 was a thing of the past.
In the first 25 games of the season, Sergachev had seven points, none of which were goals.
The past 16 games have been a different story. Sergachev has picked up nine points, two of which came against Columbus on Tuesday. He scored his first goal of the season against San Jose this past Saturday.
One assist on Tuesday came via Sergachev pinching down low to set up Mathieu Joseph's goal, the first of the game.
Lightning coach Jon Cooper said this recent surge in points can serve as a confidence booster for Sergachev as the offensive production is lining up with the defensive production.
"It definitely wears on guys when you don't score," Cooper said. "He went 40-plus games without one, but it's not an indication of how he's been playing. A lot of times, guys judge themselves personally on how many points they have, but that's not how coaches judge them. He has improved so much on his own end in the way he has played."