Even though training camps haven’t quite gotten underway just yet, injury news, unfortunately, has struck again for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Captain Steven Stamkos has sustained a lower-body injury and his participation in training camp will be limited, the team announced this morning.
#tblightning GM Julien BriseBois said Steven Stamkos suffered a new lower-body injury and won’t be at full participant at the start of training camp. He’s getting treatment and doing land work right now
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) July 11, 2020
Steven Stamkos Out With Lower-Body Injury
Stamkos’ unknown status leaves a feeling of uncertainty in the Lightning organization as they prepare for a crucial playoff run. Stamkos is undoubtedly one of the team centrepieces. Before the NHL season paused in March due to concerns surrounding COVID-19, Stamkos was operating above a point-per-game pace. In only 57 games, Stamkos had scored 29 goals and 37 assists for 66 points.
Given Stamkos’ lengthy injury history, especially with lower-body ailments, this news won’t be met with excitement from Tampa fans. According to Lightning radio analyst Caley Chelios, however, the injury is not serious and Stamkos is expected to return when the team travels to Toronto for play.
INJURY UPDATE: Steven Stamkos sustained a new lower-body injury during his training session at Amalie. He will not be a full participant at training camp. He has been doing treatment and dry-land work, still rehabbing. BriseBois said he be ready when games begin in TOR.
— Caley Chelios (@CaleyChelios) July 11, 2020
What This Means for the Future
Perhaps the most tangible impact of Stamkos’ injury will be felt by Lightning prospects fighting to get noticed. Stamkos’ vacated spot in training camp will likely leave opportunities for players like Alexander Volkov, Alex Barre-Boulet, and others to show what they can do to Jon Cooper and his coaching staff. While it’s unlikely they get an opening night spot in the lineup due to Stamkos’ likely return, it certainly would factor into head coach Cooper’s decision in terms of an injury replacement.
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