Tampa Bay Lightning Player News: All Positions

News: Rutta (lower body) should be ready to rock once Tampa Bay begins its training camp in July, Joe Smith of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Rutta was still recovering from a lower-body injury when the NHL suspended its season in mid-March, but he's had over two months to recover at this point, so he shouldn't have any limitations when the Lightning begin their training camp in July. Tampa Bay does, however, have a ton of depth at defense, especially after signing Zach Bogosian in late February, so Rutta may be on the outside looking in once the playoffs get under way.
News: Hedman (undisclosed) is expected to be fully fit when the NHL resumes Phase 2 workouts, per Joe Smith of The Athletic.
Impact: Prior to getting hurt and the league going on hiatus, Hedman racked up 13 points in his previous 15 contests. With the announcement that the NHL will jump straight into the playoffs, Hedman will close out the regular season with 55 points, marking the fourth straight year in which he reached the 50-point threshold. Given his role with the Lightning's No. 1 power-play unit, Hedman figures to be a top-end fantasy option in DFS contests and playoff pools.
News: Semykin penned a three-year, entry-level contract with Tampa Bay on Thursday.
Impact: Semykin spent the bulk of the 2019-20 campaign playing in the MHL (Russia's third-tier league) for SKA-1946 St Petersburg, for which he notched nine goals and 15 helpers in 24 outings. Given his age (20), all options are on the table for the blueliner next season, as he could make the jump to North America and play in the AHL or continue developing overseas. Regardless, considering he hasn't yet played in a top-tier league, it seems unlikely he will see any action in an NHL contest for another year or two.
News: Stamkos (abdomen) is expected to be healthy and ready to go once (if) the NHL season resumes. Coach Jon Cooper told reporters, "Lot of it with him was about rest," Joe Smith of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Stamkos missed the previous seven contests prior to the league hiatus due to his abdominal injury. Prior to getting hurt, the world-class forward was riding a 15-game point streak, during which he racked up 12 goals and 10 helpers. If the league restarts, whether it be the regular season or straight to the playoffs, Stamkos figures to offer high-end fantasy production in DFS contests and will continue to serve as an elite player in season-long formats heading into 2020-21.
News: Walcott signed a one-year, two-way contract to remain with the LIghtning on Friday.
Impact: The 26-year-old has yet to appear in an NHL game. He's found the net 18 times in 240 career games at the AHL level.
News: Stamkos is nearly back to full health after undergoing core-muscle surgery March 2, Diana C. Nearhos of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
Impact: Before the NHL suspended its season March 12, Stamkos had been viewed as a candidate to return to action at some point in the first round of the playoffs, which would have been scheduled to begin during the upcoming week. The NHL's ongoing hiatus will ultimately result in Stamkos missing just seven games, with the break providing him with enough time to fully recover from his surgery before the league allows teams to resume training for whatever remains of the season. Before requiring the procedure, Stamkos had been averaging more than a point per game for the fourth straight season, tallying 29 goals and 37 assists across his 57 appearances.
News: Hedman (undisclosed) beat out John Carlson for best defenseman in the NHLPA player pool.
Impact: Hedman received 37.88 percent of the vote followed by Carlson (21.35) and Roman Josi (9.04). Prior to the shutdown, the 28-year-old Hedman missed two games due to an undisclosed injury but figures to be available should the season pick back up.
News: Point has 25 goals, 64 points and a plus-25 rating in 66 games this season.
Impact: After exploding for 92 points last year, Point's 64 points this season would be the lowest since his 2016-17 rookie showing. The 24-year-old forward's current plus-28 rating would be a new career best, though. Point racked up 35 power-play points last year but has just 13 with the man advantage in 2019-20. He has a chance to reach the 70-point mark if the NHL finishes the current campaign.
News: Vasilevskiy currently leads the league in wins with 35 in 52 starts.
Impact: Vasilevskiy has shown why most had him pegged as this year's No. 1 fantasy netminder heading into the season, having compiled a 35-14-3 record while posting a respectable 2.56 GAA and .917 save percentage in 52 appearances. The 25-year-old Russian won't reach the personal high he set in 2017-18 with 44 wins in 65 appearances, but if the NHL resumes its season at some point, he'll have a good shot at eclipsing the 40-victory mark for the second time in his career this year.
News: The Lightning and Kucherov learned Thursday the NHL announced that the 2019-20 season has been suspended until further notice due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Impact: In a statement released Thursday, commissioner Gary Bettman said "In light of ongoing developments resulting from the coronavirus, and after consulting with medical experts and convening a conference call of the Board of Governors, the National Hockey League is announcing today that it will pause the 2019-20 season beginning with tonight's games." Bettman went on to say "Our goal is to resume play as soon as it is appropriate and prudent so that we will be able to complete the season and award the Stanley Cup. Until then, we thank NHL fans for your patience and hope you stay healthy."
News: Vasilevskiy turned aside 34 shots in Tuesday's 2-1 loss to the Maple Leafs.
Impact: The 25-year-old goalie came up with plenty of big stops, and both shots that beat him came on Toronto power plays, but Frederik Andersen was just a little bit better in the other crease. Vasilevskiy has still won three of his last five starts, and on the season he sports a 2.56 GAA and .917 save percentage.
News: Hedman (undisclosed) won't play Tuesday against the Maple Leafs, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reports.
Impact: Hedman will miss a second straight game Tuesday, but he's still considered day-to-day with his undisclosed issue, so he should be ready to return sooner rather than later. Another update on the 29-year-old Swede's status should surface prior to Thursday's matchup with Philadelphia.
News: Vasilevskiy is slated to tend the twine versus the Maple Leafs on the road Tuesday, NHL.com's Dave McCarthy reports.
Impact: Vasilevskiy went 3-1-0 in his last four outings prior to getting the night off versus Detroit on Sunday. The 25-year-old needs just five more victories to get back over the 40-win mark for the second time in his career. The Russian should continue to carry the load for the Lightning heading into the final stretch of the season, though Curtis McElhinney could get a few extra looks to keep Vasilevskiy fresh for the postseason.
News: Gourde notched two assists in Sunday's 5-4 shootout loss to the Red Wings.
Impact: He's largely responsible for the Bolts even earning a point from this game, as he helped set up Tampa's final two goals in regulation to pull the club out of a 4-2 hole. Gourde still hasn't been able to consistently rekindle his scoring pace from two seasons ago, but he does have two goals and seven points in his last eight games.
News: Point scored two goals, one on the power play, in Sunday's 5-4 shootout loss to the Red Wings.
Impact: While he sparked the Bolts' offense during regulation, Point failed to beat Jonathan Bernier on his shootout attempt. Point has an impressive seven goals and 19 points through 17 games since the beginning of February, and Sunday's performance pushed him up to the 25-goal plateau for the third straight season.
News: McElhinney made 24 saves in regulation and overtime and stopped one of three shootout attempts in Sunday's 5-4 loss to the Red Wings.
Impact: Neither team gave its netminder much help in this one -- Detroit's opening goal in the first period came on a stretch pass that sprung Robby Fabbri for a clear breakaway, setting the tone for the afternoon -- but McElhinney also failed to come up with a big save when the Bolts needed him to. The veteran goalie is now 8-8-2 on the season with a mediocre 2.89 GAA and .906 save percentage.
News: McElhinney will guard the cage for Sunday's road matchup versus Detroit, Dana Wakiji of the Red Wings' official site reports.
Impact: The 36-year-old has been decent in spot-start duties this campaign, going 8-7-2 along with a 2.83 GAA and .908 save percentage in 17 appearances. McElhinney will draw an outstanding matchup against a Red Wings offense that sits last in the league in goals per game this season (1.97). McElhinney certainly warrants a strong look in DFS formats against the league's worst team in Detroit.
News: McDonagh (lower body) will be activated off injured reserve and suit up in Sunday's contest against Detroit, Bryan Burns of the Lightning's official site reports.
Impact: McDonagh will finally return to the lineup after missing the past 14 games with the lower-body issue. He'll assume a lineup spot for Victor Hedman (undisclosed), who's set to miss Sunday's game. McDonagh will be a nice boost to the lineup for the Lightning, as he's racked up 12 points and a plus-17 rating in 48 appearances this campaign.
News: Hedman (undisclosed) won't be in the lineup for Sunday's game against the Red Wings, Bryan Burns of the Lightning's official site reports.
Impact: Hedman will miss Sunday's game after leaving Saturday's game against the Bruins with an undisclosed issue. The specifics around the defenseman's injury remain unclear; however the team did announce that Hedman is considered day-to-day. Despite the Swede sitting out, the team did get good news with fellow defenseman Ryan McDonagh (lower body) set to return to the lineup after almost a month absence. Hedman's next chance to suit up is in Tuesday's game against Toronto.
News: Vasilevskiy made 35 saves in a 5-3 win over Boston on Saturday.
Impact: That's two wins in a row and three in his last four games. Vasilevskiy recently went through a slippery streak where too many goals snuck past him, but he's clearly back and focused. And games like Saturday against divisional rival Boston make a statement.
News: Point nabbed an assist in a 5-3 victory over Boston on Saturday.
Impact: Point is hovering around the point-per-game pace (62 in 64). His 92 points last season may end up as an outlier, given the Bolts' change to a more defensive approach. But even if that's the case, there's still growth in Point's game, especially at even strength. Last year, he delivered a lot more on the power play (35 of his 92 points). This season, Point has 62 points overall, but just 12 on the power play.
News: Bogosian picked up an assist Saturday in a 5-3 win over the Bruins.
Impact: His ice time jumped from 15-17 minutes a night to 22, including a whopping 3:22 shorthanded. Bogosian's ice time shot up after Victor Hedman got hurt and it will likely stay high if the big Swede is out for long. Bogosian isn't much of a fantasy force. But Bogey might be a short-term fit on your roster if Hedman is out and he gains a more prominent role.
News: Killorn notched a power-play goal Saturday in a 5-3 win over Boston.
Impact: Killorn's dream season continues. He continue to build on his career goal mark and now has 26. And he's just one point from his first ever 50-point season. Killorn is actually on pace for 60 points, including more than 30 goals. That's valuable in any fantasy format.
News: Sergachev scored a goal and added an assist in Saturday's 5-3 win over the Bruins.
Impact: The goal came while shorthanded -- it was the first shortie of his career. Sergachev now has 10 goals and 34 points in 68 games. Those 10 goals are a career mark. He has four points in his last four games, but just five in his last 11. Sergachev saw his ice time leap to 28:20 because of Victor Hedman's injury. The season is long and games are getting tougher. But the young Russian could be in for increased opportunity if the veteran Swede is out for long. And that will result in points, what with so many offensive studs on the Bolts.
News: Cirelli scored a shorthanded goal Saturday in a 5-3 win over Boston.
Impact: He has put up points in back-to-back games. Cirelli's great season continues -- he has 44 points (16 goals, 28 assists) in 66 games. But his pace has slowed in the last 13 games. Cirelli has just four points (one goal, three assists) in that span. Still, his ascension among great two-way pivots continues. He's better than Sean Couturier and Jordan Staal were at the same point in their careers, but not quite a good as Patrice Bergeron. That's impressive company.
News: Hedman (undisclosed) played only 4:36 during Saturday's game against the Bruins, Joe Smith of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Hedman was never officially ruled out for the game and remained on the bench, but he wasn't able to get much playing time. Per Smith, Hedman will be re-evaluated in the coming days. It may be too quick a turnaround for the Swedish defenseman to be ready for Sunday's matchup with the Red Wings. If he can't go, Luke Schenn will likely enter the lineup.
News: Vasilevskiy will start Saturday's game in Boston, Joe Smith of The Athletic reports.
Impact: Vasilevskiy is 2-1-0 with five goals allowed in his last three starts, bouncing back from a three-game losing streak during which he surrendered 16 goals. Even with the recent turnaround, Vasilevskiy will be tough to trust against a Bruins team that sits atop the league standings with 98 points, nine clear of Vasilevskiy's Lightning in the Atlantic Division.
News: McDonagh (lower body) skated in a regular jersey Saturday but is unlikely to make his return later in the day against Boston, Bryan Burns of the Lightning's official site reports.
Impact: McDonagh appears right on the edge of making his return but won't do so Saturday. The Lightning will be right back in action Sunday in Detroit, and McDonagh could be back in the lineup as soon as that game if things break right.
News: Kucherov put up a goal and assist in Thursday's 4-0 win over Montreal.
Impact: Kucherov had points in 19 straight games (30 points), but that streak was snapped Tuesday against Boston. But he's back on the score sheet now and ready to start his next streak. Kucherov is clearly one of the most consistent scorers over the last few seasons. He's a fantasy pillar.
News: Hedman scored twice, including the game winner, in Thursday's 4-0 victory over the Canadiens.
Impact: His 11 goals and 55 points put him squarely in third in NHL scoring from the blue line. But the goals were Hedman's first in 31 games -- he hadn't found twine since the last game before the Christmas break. It must be nice for him to get that monkey off his back. Still, Hedman is an elite fantasy producer. Two words: auto play.
News: Vailevskiy made 32 saves Thursday in a 4-0 win over the Canadiens.
Impact: Vasilevskiy is 33-13-3 on the season, but he's scuffled lately. The last two weeks have been hard -- he's 2-4 with 21 goals allowed. It's better for the Bolts for him to get this out of his system now, but it's bad for fantasy owners, especially those in playoff matchups. Keep the faith -- Vasilevskiy is among the best in the business and this win is the start of his bounce back.
News: According to Bryan Burns of the Lightning's official site, Curtis McElhinney was the only goalie on the ice for morning skate, which indicates Vasilevskiy will guard the home goal during Thursday's matchup with Montreal.
Impact: Vasilevskiy was fantastic in his last start Tuesday against the Bruins, turning aside 33 of 35 shots, but he ultimately suffered his 14th loss of the season due to insufficient goal support. The 25-year-old Russian will attempt to get back in the win column in a surprisingly tough home matchup with a Canadiens club that's averaging 3.31 goals per game on the road this campaign, third-most in the NHL.
News: Gourde dropped the gloves and fought the Bruins' Joakim Nordstrom on Tuesday night.
Impact: He went hard into Tuukka Rask in the second period in the hope of poking the puck loose and Nordstrom didn't take lightly to it. Gourde has really struggled to find his offensive game this season. He has just 26 points (10 goals, 16 assists) in 66 games, compared to 48 last season and 64 the one before that. It's a challenge to activate him, but there may be a glimmer of hope. Gourde has six points, including four goals, in his last 10 games. It's not much, but it's something.
News: Schenn has been a healthy scratch in three of the Lightning's last four games.
Impact: Schenn had been getting 11-13 minutes a game, but saw just 4:31 Thursday against Chicago. He has one goal and one assist in 24 games this season, but 79 hits in that span.
News: Coleman delivered three hits and a shot on net in Tuesday's 2-1 loss to the Bruins.
Impact: Coleman's ice time hasn't taken a major hit in the transition from New Jersey to Tampa Bay, as he's averaging 15:43 per game -- 1:19 less than he did with the Devils. Due to Steven Stamkos' core injury, Coleman should remain in the top six for now. He's added more physicality than offensive upside, though, as the 28-year-old has notched just one assist compared to 15 hits through five contests.
News: Johnson dished out an assist in Tuesday's 2-1 loss to the Bruins.
Impact: Johnson's in danger of finishing with a career low in points, as he just notched his 30th point after 61 games. He's getting fewer opportunities -- his average of 14:33 per game is the lowest since his rookie year -- on the third line, and it's been an especially tough stretch with just three points over the past 12 contests.
News: McDonagh (lower body) participated in contact drills Wednesday but won't play against the Canadiens on Thursday, Bryan Burns of the Lightning's official site reports.
Impact: Head coach Jon Cooper relayed that he believes McDonagh is even stronger than he was before sustaining a lower-body injury Feb. 6 against the Penguins. It's possible and perhaps likely that he'll be ready to return during the team's back-to-back this weekend, starting Saturday against the Bruins. He'll need to be lifted from IR first, but once he's cleared to go, he'll likely bump either Braydon Coburn or Zach Bogosian from the lineup.