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Lightning Round: Nikita Kucherov officially goes on LTIR

He’s hoping to be back before the Olympics.

Florida Panthers v Tampa Bay Lightning
TAMPA, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 19: Anthony Cirelli #71 of the Tampa Bay Lightning warms up during a game against the Florida Panthers at Amalie Arena on October 19, 2021 in Tampa, Florida.
Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Lightning placed Nikita Kucherov on LTIR yesterday ahead of their date with the Florida Panthers. The now 21-man roster can fit two more spares, but at the moment the team hasn’t called anyone up. They could also trade for Jack Eichel, though I don’t know why they would do that because he even hasn’t had his surgery yet and definitely won’t be playing this season, or possibly ever.

In reality, the Lightning are doing nothing. It’s status quo for the team as they try to push forward with a, frankly, significantly diminished roster than what they had last spring.

Nikita Kucherov is expected to be back sometime during the regular season, I actually thought it was interesting when Mikhail Sergachev said he’s getting ready for the Olympics. That would mean the timeline is a little over three months. Hopefully he’ll get to play for his team there and he’ll come back for the last couple months of the regular season. We’ll probably need him then considering how the season is going so far. Missing the playoffs aren’t out of the question.

And to all the dummies still going on about conspiracy theories. There were absolutely zero benefits to losing Kucherov three games into the season. If they started him on LTIR after the playoffs and said it was season-ending, sure, complain (but then we’ll ignore you with two Stanley Cups plugging both our ears). This is the worst possible scenario because the Lightning lost a lot of good players over the summer and now Kucherov at a time when the team is kinda pooching it. We don’t want sympathy, just stop karening on Twitter to anyone who’ll listen.

As for last night, the Lightning lost 4-1 to the Panthers. Matt, who was unwell last night, still managed to get a recap out. Flu Game quality stuff from our guy. [Raw Charge]

“It’s early in the season, but the Lightning’s struggles to score first and attain any form of a lead is becoming worrisome. Tampa Bay has yet to lead for a single second this season. For a team as talent-laden and experienced as this that is a bewildering stat to behold. Tonight’s game only magnified that issue as the Panthers capitalized on their chances while the Lightning squandered theirs.”

Lots of Crunch and Solar Bears fans were hoping the organization would be able to keep Eamon McAdam after the Crunch lost starting goalie Maxime Lagace to injury. Alas, he is off to Denmark.

Around the NHL

Last night was pretty fun in the Atlantic Division, but also in the Central.

The Montreal Canadiens lost to the San Jose Sharks to start their season 0-4-0. [San Jose Hockey Now] And in case you’d like to surf the comments. [Habs Eyes on the Prize]

The Buffalo Sabres beat the Vancouver Canucks to start their season 3-0-0. [Die by the Blade]

The Minnesota Wild came back to beat the Winnipeg Jets in a crazy third period where an empty-net goal for the Jets was called back only for them to lose the lead seconds later and the game in overtime. The Jets are also 0-2-1 to start their season. [Hockey Wilderness]