CHICAGO -- Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov is in the lineup for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, TVA Sports).
Kucherov, 21, left Game 5 on Saturday when he tripped over Chicago goalie Corey Crawford and crashed shoulder-first into the goal post. Kucherov did not return. The Blackhawks won the game 2-1 and lead the best-of-7 series 3-2.
Kucherov is second on the Lightning in goals (10), assists (12), points (22), power-play goals (three) and game-winning goals (three) in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Linemate Tyler Johnson's 13 goals and 23 points lead the playoffs.
The loss of Kucherov in Game 5 forced coach Jon Cooper to at times move captain Steven Stamkos to "The Triplets" line with Johnson and Ondrej Palat. Cooper was able to move Stamkos back to his regular spot on right wing with Valtteri Filppula and Alex Killorn with Kucherov’s return.
Rookie forward Jonathan Drouin is in the lineup and defenseman Nikita Nesterov is scratched for a second straight game. It was the first time Drouin played in consecutive games since Game 3 and 4 of the second round against the Montreal Canadiens.
It was the first time Drouin played a game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs on the road since Game 4 at the Detroit Red Wings in the first round, his first of the playoffs.
It is the 12th time in the playoffs the Lightning are using six defensemen and 12 forwards. The Lightning are 5-6 when doing so; they are 9-5 when dressing seven defensemen and 11 forwards.