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Montreal's Prust predictable; Lightning responds predictably (w/video)

Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop, keeping an eye on the puck, was tripped late in Sunday’s game by Montreal’s Brandon Prust but took it in stride.
Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop, keeping an eye on the puck, was tripped late in Sunday’s game by Montreal’s Brandon Prust but took it in stride.
Published May 5, 2015

MONTREAL — The Lightning wasn't surprised to see Canadiens agitator LW Brandon Prust trip G Ben Bishop behind the net late in Sunday's Game 2.

"You can see it coming from a mile away," C Steven Stamkos said. "Not the first time (Prust has) done something like that."

D Braydon Coburn came to Bishop's defense and started a fight with Prust, who got a game misconduct. And it might not be over. Stamkos said, "We may look at that and address it the way we feel we need to."

When asked if he believes in an "eye for an eye," coach Jon Cooper said, "I do sometimes."

"You kind of think (Prust) is going in there for one reason," Cooper said. "It wasn't to get the puck from (Bishop). I don't think Bishop put himself in a spot that was vulnerable. (Prust) went in there, he had one thing on his mind, it's probably to make sure he injured him."

Bishop, who has gotten in a shoving match with Prust before, shrugged it off.

"I didn't really even see him, didn't know he was on the ice," Bishop said. "Otherwise, I probably wouldn't have played the puck."

Medical matters: C Cedric Paquette left midway through the second period of the Lightning's 6-2 win with an undisclosed injury and did not return. He has appeared in every playoff game, tallying one goal.

Depending on the severity of his injury, the door could open for rookie LW Jonathan Drouin to crack the lineup Wednesday in Game 3. Cooper said Paquette was taken out as a precaution and would be re-evaluated today.

No 'Jo:' That Drouin continues to sit during the playoffs remains a hot topic, especially in Canada. Even Hall of Fame coach Scotty Bowman wrote in his column for the French newspaper Le Journal de Montreal that Drouin should be playing.

But Drouin, the No. 3 overall draft pick in 2013, was a healthy scratch again Sunday, giving him just one appearance (Game 4 against Detroit) in nine playoff games.

"He's an extreme talent, and he's getting better and better," Cooper said of Drouin. "This is a learning lesson for him, just as it was for (Nikita Kucherov) last year or any of (those) guys.

"But we put in the 20 players we feel give us the best chance to play, and probably moving forward here he's probably going to be in that 20 all the time. Just right now, he's on the sidelines. Whether he has to wait his turn or we feel a matchup is best for him, I'll tell you, Jo is going to play in the series at some point.''

D Mark Barberio and D Nikita Nesterov were also scratched, as the Lightning went with the same lineup as Game 1.

Trash talk: Prust could get fined for comments he made after the game, saying referee Brad Watson verbally abused him in the penalty box.

"(Watson) kept provoking me," Prust said. "He came to the box and called me every name in the book … said he'd drive me right out of this building."

"That's the ref he is. He tries to play God. He tries to control the game, and he did that (Sunday)."

Contact Joe Smith at joesmith@tampabay.com. Follow @TBTimes_JSmith.

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