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Point out for Lightning loss in Game 3 of East Final against Islanders

Forward may have been injured in first period of Game 2

by Tom Gulitti @TomGulittiNHL / Staff Writer

Brayden Point did not play for the Tampa Bay Lightning in a 5-3 loss to the New York Islanders in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final at Rogers Place in Edmonton on Friday.

The center may have been injured in the first period of Game 2 on Wednesday, a 2-1 win. As part of the NHL Return to Play Plan, a team is not permitted to disclose player injury or illness information.

Tampa Bay forward Alex Killorn was suspended one game and also did not play in the first loss for Tampa Bay in the best-of-7 series.

It is unknown if Point will be able to play in Game 4 on Sunday (3 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS).

"Guys [have] to take more responsibility," Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman said. "You're not going to replace those players, but I think guys really stepped up and took advantage of maybe more ice time and playing in probably more offensive situations.

"So, a lot of good things in that game. Obviously, the outcome is not what we wanted, but we'll regroup and be better on Sunday."

Forwards Mitchell Stephens and Carter Verhaeghe were in the Tampa Bay lineup, which again had 11 forwards and seven defensemen.

Verhaeghe had an assist on the goal by Tyler Johnson that tied the game 3-3 with 7:56 left in the third period. Brock Nelson gave New York a 4-3 lead with 3:25 remaining, and Jean-Gabriel Pageau scored an empty-net goal.

"They're obviously a huge part of our team and we miss them (Point and Killorn), but I thought [Verhaeghe] and [Stephens] played a good game today," Tampa Bay forward Ondrej Palat said.

Point, who scored five points (two goals, three assists) in an 8-2 Game 1 win on Monday, lost his helmet after he fell awkwardly into the left-wing boards in the offensive zone with seven seconds remaining in the first period of Game 2. He was late returning to the Tampa Bay bench at the start of the second period and played two shifts in the opening 5:23 before going back to the locker room.

Point was the leading scorer remaining in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He scored 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in 15 games, which was second this postseason behind Colorado Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon, who scored 25 points (nine goals, 16 assists) in 15 games before Colorado was eliminated by the Dallas Stars in the Western Conference Second Round.

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