NHL News: Lightning place Stamkos on LTIR; Kucherov not expected yet, Jets sign Lowry, Avalanche games postponed, and North schedule changes

The Tampa Bay Lightning have announced that Steven Stamkos will be placed on LTIR due to a lower-body injury. Placement on IR requires Stamkos to miss at least 10 games. With Tampa having only 13 remaining it is likely he may sit for the rest of the regular season. Stamkos is expected back for the playoffs.

Stamkos on LTIR, Kucherov practices not expected back until playoffs

There was a bit of consternation around the hockey world when Nikita Kucherov practiced today in a non-contact jersey. Some raised an eyebrow if he would be taken off LTIR himself with Stamkos going on, which raises cap questions. Head coach Jon Cooper dispelled that notion today.

“I don’t anticipate that happening,” Cooper said. “I don’t know how we can make that happen. Rest is still what’s best for him. Is he making strides? Yes, there’s no question. You’re getting to that point now where it’s a little bit of a tease. You’re feeling pretty good about yourself, but when you see people that make the decision on your health, they say, ‘No, not yet.’”

The Athletic

Winnipeg Jets sign Adam Lowry

The Winnipeg Jets inked Adam Lowry to a new five year deal worth $3.25 million AAV. Per the team’s website:

Lowry, 28, is in his seventh season with the Jets and his goals, assists, and points per game in 2020-21 are the highest of his career. The St. Louis, Miss. native has 20 points (8G, 12A) in 44 games this season after he led Winnipeg with three points (1G, 2A) in four postseason games in 2019-20. 

NHL postpones Avalanche games

Philipp Grubauer
Feb 2, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Colorado Avalanche goaltender Philipp Grubauer (31) follows the puck in the third period against the Minnesota Wild at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Three Avalanche players are now on COVID protocol. Philip Grubauer who tested positive will be out approximately 14 days. They will re-open their practice facility next week on 4/21 and play the next day against the Blues.

Per the team’s website:

The National Hockey League announced today that, as a result of a third Colorado Avalanche Player entering the NHL’s COVID Protocols earlier today, the team’s games tonight and Sunday vs. Los Angeles as well as April 20 against St. Louis will be postponed. Pending test results in the coming days, it is expected that the Avalanche will be able to re-open their facilities for practice on Wednesday, April 21, with a return to game action on April 22 vs. St. Louis. The decision was made by the League’s, NHLPA’s and Club’s medical groups.

North Schedule Update

The impact of the Canucks COVID outbreak to the schedule is now updated.