Tampa Bay Lightning: Storm brewing as Nikita Kucherov may miss significant time with hip injury

The defending Stanley Cup Champions are already finding how heavy lies the head that wears the crown. They were coming in without Kevin Shattenkirk who was lost to Anaheim in free agency. Their captain, Steven Stamkos had abdominal surgery in October and is uncertain for the start of the season.

Now you can add Nikita Kucherov to the mix of question marks.

Nikita Kucherov may miss start of the season

nikita kucherov
Kucherov and Hedman celebrate [DIRK SHADD | Tampa Bay Times]

The 27 year-old forward is arguably the Lightning’s best player. It turns out that he was feeling discomfort in his hip and received an injection for it. Should he not respond well to the shot, this could become an issue that may require significant time on the injury list.

As of now, there is limited information coming out of either camp. So stay tuned, because this may be a massive blow to the Lightning’s repeat hopes in a shortened season.

Kucherov, 27, received an injection last week after continuing to feel discomfort in offseason workouts, per a league source. Kucherov was expected to skate Monday for the first time since and see how he felt. Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois declined to comment, as did agent Dan Milstein.

The Athletic

LTIR could help the cap situation

Should the Lightning be forced to put Kucherov on LTIR, that would provide them with relief to sign Anthony Cirelli. While they are still trying to move Tyler Johnson, there’s been no traction there.

Alex Killorn remains their best tradable asset, and teams are interested in adding his grit, size, and scoring punch.