After it was announced that Lightning star Steven Stamkos was suffering from a blood clot, many assumed that he was done both for the regular season as well as the playoffs, but Stamkos may have hinted at a possible return when speaking to his teammates.
Tampa Bay Lightning insider Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times recently spoke to some of the Lightning players about kicking off their postseason without the captain i nthe line up, and while most gave generic answers, Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov revealed that Stamkos is working hard to make it back for the playoffs.
"You can tell he wants to be there (on the ice)," wing Alex Killorn said. "In the case he could come back, he really wants to make sure we go back to the final to give him a chance to play again this season. That was kind of his message, 'Just go to the finals and maybe I'll see you guys.' "
Stamkos was given a 1-3 month timetable for recovery, no surprise when you consider one of his ribs was removed during surgery to alleviate pressure on the blood clot. The early side of that time frame would allow for a potential come back in the final however, and it now appears that's the plan for Stamkos. Of course the Lightning will need to survive that long, and without their top forward and one of their top pairing defenseman in Anton Stralman, that's easier said than done.