#tblightning Nikita Kucherov is officially listed as day to day, a good sign.
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) December 16, 2019
Nikita Kucherov Injured
During the second period of the Lightning’s 5-2 loss on Saturday night against the Washington Capitals is when the injury occurred. Kucherov took a blast off the top of his foot from Capitals defenceman John Carlson. He immediately went to the locker room and did not return for the start of the third period. During the third period of play, the Lightning officially announced Kucherov was out for the remainder of the game.
Kucherov registered one assist in the Lightning’s loss on Saturday night. Before exiting the game in the second period, he had 11:17 of ice time. He left with the score tied at 1-1 before the Capitals scored back-to-back goals and never looked back.
This is not the first time Kucherov has been forced to miss time due to an injury this season. He missed one game with an upper-body injury earlier in the year after receiving a hit from St. Louis Blues forward Brayden Schenn during a game on November 19.
This season Kucherov has 34 points (10 goals and 24 assists), which leads the team. Even though Kucherov leads the team offensively, he along with the team are not on that recording setting pace of a year ago.
During Monday’s practice, the Lightning got some good news as Tyler Johnson returned to the ice. He has missed the previous two games with a lower-body injury. Johnson was skating on the top line filling in for the injured Kucherov alongside Brayden Point and Ondrej Palat. The Lightning are set to host the Ottawa Senators Tuesday night. While his status is unclear for the game, there is a pretty good chance he will miss the game since he did not partake in today’s practice. Braydon Coburn was practice for the Lightning but in a red non-contact jersey. He remains sidelined indefinitely with a lower-body injury.
If Kucherov is forced to miss more time than expected, the Lightning will have to promote someone from the AHL.