COLUMBUS, Ohio — Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky was told by the team to stay away from Thursday night's game against the Predators because of an "incident" it did not detail that "failed to meet (the team's) expectations and values."
The website the Athletic reported that the incident occurred in Tampa, where Bobrovsky allowed all four Lightning goals before being pulled in a 4-0 loss Tuesday. Bobrovsky was seen exchanging words with coach John Tortorella as he exited, Canada's TSN TV network reported.
In a team statement, general manager Jarmo Kekalainen said "There are certain expectations and values that we have established for our players that define our culture. An incident occurred in which Sergei failed to meet those expectations and values, so we made the decision that he would not be with the team for (Thursday's) game. This is an internal matter, and we will have no further comment at this time."
Tortorella declined to answer questions about the situation Thursday morning.
"I have no comment. The release will speak for itself," he said.
A meeting with Bobrovsky was planned before practice today, Kekalainen told the Athletic. If all goes well, he could be on the ice for pracice and with the team when its travels to Washington to face the Capitals on Sunday.
Backup Joonas Korpisalo was expected to start against the Predators.
Of pulling Bobrovsky, Tortorella said Thursday that he had considered pulling the goalie after the third Lightning goal at 6:05 of the third period.
"Game's over," he said. "I know I wanted to have him here versus Nashville. I did not want him getting scarred any more."
The final goal was scored almost four minutes later.
Bobrovsky, 30, is a two-time Vezina Trophy winner (2013, 2017). He is 18-13-1 this season, the final one of his contract. He can be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Bobrovsky said in September that the team's management was aware of his plans for the future but wouldn't elaborate.
Information from Times wires was used in this report.