Steven Stamkos, captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning, will miss his second consecutive game against the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday night due to a lower-body ailment.
Coach Jon Cooper issued an update before the game, stating that Stamkos was day to day. Stamkos seemed to be injured when blocking a shot in Saturday’s 6-4 loss to Detroit. He did not play in the next day’s 5-2 defeat to Ottawa.
The Lightning (1-2) finish their three-game road trip against Buffalo (0-2) before coming home to begin a five-game homestand against Vancouver on Thursday.
Tampa Bay is already missing starting goalkeeper Andrei Vasilevskiy, who will be sidelined for at least another month after undergoing back surgery. Due to an upper-body ailment, center Tyler Motte will miss his third consecutive game.
Cooper expressed a feeling of urgency after losing to Atlantic Division opponents and being injured.
“To go on this trip this early in the year and get zero points out of teams you’re competing for a playoff spot makes it a little bit of an uphill climb and that’s not something you want to do early in the year,” Cooper told reporters. “I don’t want to say, Game 4s (of the season) are big games, but this is a big one for us.”