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Notebook: Steven Stamkos okay after knee-to-head hit

by Missy Zielinski / Tampa Bay Lightning

Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos said Monday he “feels pretty good,” and is expecting to play in Game 4.

With less than five minutes remaining in the second period Sunday, the Bolts’ captain took a knee to the head that sent him to the locker room.

“I got tangled up with Prust,” Stamkos said. “I don’t think [Alexei] Emelin saw me and he tried to get out of the way. I don’t think there was any intention, it was just a play that happens in the game.”

Stamkos returned to the bench at the start of the third and factored in on Matt Carle’s goal that kept the Lightning fighting until the last seconds of the contest.

It obviously has not been a typical year for Stamkos, who missed half of the regular season with a fractured tibia. He said that even if this was a regular season game he would play.

“I take pride in not missing games,” Stamkos said. “If I feel like I’m ready to play, whether it’s a regular season game or a playoff game, I’m going to try my best to play.”


A 3-0 hole is something all too familiar for Carle. When he was with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010, Carle and the Flyers lost three in a row versus the Boston Bruins in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but came back to win the next four.

Carle offered wise words that the Lightning must live by, as they look to do the same.

“When you lose three it feels like the world is collapsing a little bit,” Carle said. “But you get one game and then you get some momentum going. We’re looking forward to tomorrow.”


After continuously enduring the Montreal media, head coach Jon Cooper and Stamkos had fun with reporters in a scrum Monday.

When Stamkos was busy giving an answer, Cooper jumped in with a water bottle in hand as his microphone, to ask Stamkos how he was feeling.

“Eh, I feel better than I did yesterday, we’ll see, probably a game-time decision,” Stamkos joked.

The banter continued when Cooper asked how the coaching matchup had been. Stamkos responded with "he’d like a little more ice time."

“You ever see that Seinfeld episode when somebody’s speaking to somebody and they do that little pat on the head when they want to be rescued,” Cooper said. “I was like okay, got to pull Stammer out of this one.”

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