The Tampa Bay Lightning will have their second official scrimmage later today as they get ready for the season re-start.
Good news on the injury front, Steven Stamkos was back on the ice working out with the power-play unit over the weekend.
Cooper has said there is no rush to get Stamkos back, the goal is to make sure Stamkos is ready to go when the puck drops August 1st against the Washington Capitals.
“He’s inching his way. We’ve got a few more days of practice here in a row. I hope we can start putting him into a few more drills with the team, more than a power play. I expect that to happen, but I just can’t tell you when. We’ll slowly start working him in.”
Cedric Paquette missed practice last week and was designated unable to practice. Paquette was seen skating on Sunday.
Here is how the Lightning lines looked ahead of today’s scrimmage.
Carter Verhaeghe-Brayden Point-Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn-Anthony Cirelli-Ondrej Palat
Blake Coleman-Tyler Johnson-Barclay Goodrow
Pat Maroon-Cedric Paquette-Yanni Gourde
On defense here are the pairings
Victor Hedman-Jan Rutta
Ryan McDonagh-Erik Cernak
Mikhail Sergachev-Kevin Shattenkirk
Braydon Coburn-Zach Bogosian/Luke Schenn
The big thing to look for during today’s scrimmage is special teams play. The Lightning had the fifth-best power this past season at 23.2 percent.
The Lightning were 14th on the penalty kill at 81.4 percent.
Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has once again been nominated for the Vezina Trophy along with Tukka Rask of Boston and Conner Hellebuyck of Winnipeg.
The 25-year-old is a three-time Vezina nominee and won the award following the 2018-19 season.
After a mediocre start, Vasilevskiy heated up and carried the lightning with some great goaltending from Mid December through mid-February when Vasilevskiy went 21 games without a loss.
Vasilevskiy was 35-14-3 with a 2.56 GAA and a .917 save percentage this season.
Defensemen Victor Hedman is also a finalist for the Norris Trophy for their year in a row. Hedman was nominated along with Roman Josi of Nashville, and John Carlson of the Capitals.
Hedman has been a steady force on the Blue line in Tampa for the last 11 years winning the Norris Trophy for the first time following the 2017-18 season.
Hedman had 11 goals and 44 assists this season for a total of 55 points and was third in the league in points by a defenseman.
Hedman has been a key contributor on the power play and this season had 22 power-play points.
Hedman said upon being nominated “It’s always a privilege to get nominated, I’m super excited.