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Lightning's Palat out until after holiday break: report @NHL

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ondrej Palat will not play until after the Christmas break, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

Palat has missed the past three games after aggravating an ankle injury. He returned Dec. 10 against the Ottawa Senators after sustaining an ankle injury Nov. 7, and played in two games. He was re-injured during the first period Dec. 12 against the Washington Capitals.

Lightning coach Jon Cooper said he didn't have a timetable for Palat's return but that it wouldn't come until after the December holiday break, according to the newspaper. The Lightning's first game after the break is Dec. 26 at home against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Palat has two goals and seven points in 14 games this season.

Cooper also said center Tyler Johnson, who hasn't played since Dec. 10 after re-aggravating an injury, is closer to a return than Palat.

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