The Tampa Bay Lightning's captain has just made a shocking admission.
There has been a ton of optimism surrounding Steven Stamkos and his recovery from a surgery that was required to treat blood clots, and a lot of that optimism came from Stamkos himself. However for the first time since the surgery Stamkos admitted this week that there is a "real possibility" that he will not see any play this postseason.
According to a report from Lightning insider Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay times, Stamkos' is concerned about the long-term risk to his health and his life should he come back too early from the treatment, and given his status as an unrestricted free agent this season it makes even more sense to proceed with caution.
"First and foremost, is my health and safety," said Stamkos as per Joe Smith. "Obviously I'm a professional hockey player, but there are things you have to definitely consider other than hockey. It's tough especially when you're in the moment right now, it's easier said than done. If you're not in the playoffs right now and just doing your normal protocol and we're not thinking about it."
It's the first time Stamkos has stated anything other than his desire to come back, and if he is making this kind of admission with weeks left to go in the playoffs should the Lightning advance, it's because he has a very real concern he won't be returning to game action.