Lightning look to make do without Brayden Point vs. Flyers


Already without one top scorer due to injury, the Tampa Bay Lightning heard the two words Sunday that no team likes to hear: “out indefinitely.”

That is the status of dynamic Lightning center Brayden Point.

For its second straight contest, the club will be without Point’s presence Tuesday when it hosts the Philadelphia Flyers in the teams’ second meeting in less than a week.

Forward Anthony Cirelli said his team will miss the production and energy of Point, who collided hard into the end boards on a breakaway Saturday against the New Jersey Devils.

Point got up on his skates in pain, grimaced while clutching his left shoulder and carried out his first career penalty shot — which he missed.

The prognosis by the organization was ominous: upper body, out indefinitely.

“Obviously, Pointer’s a huge loss for us,” Cirelli said on the Bally Sports Sun broadcast. “I think a lot of guys are stepping up. So many guys out there sacrificed their bodies playing the right way and working so hard.”

Cirelli has made his own sacrifice in dealing with an injury — a broken nose suffered in a 4-1 home win over the New York Islanders on Nov. 15.

Wearing a full-face shield Sunday, Cirelli potted a pair of goals in the Lightning’s 5-4 shootout win over the Minnesota Wild a day after Tampa Bay blew a two-goal lead in the third period in a 5-3 loss to the Devils.

“I think we just have a ‘next man up’ mentality and keep working,” said Cirelli, whose squad is also without Nikita Kucherov and defenseman Erik Cernak.

Point has a flair for the dramatic, often providing game-winners in overtime such as when he beat the Florida Panthers on a breakaway on Nov. 13, and drives the flow of play and creates for his teammates with his speed and shiftiness.

Forward Alex Barre-Boulet left AHL affiliate Syracuse early Sunday morning, flew to Tampa and got in soon enough to play against the Wild and score his second tally for a 4-2 lead in the third.

Tampa Bay squandered it in regulation before winning behind Steven Stamkos’ shootout marker, moving to 8-1-2 in its past 11 games.

Meanwhile, Philadelphia would like to a little payback for Thursday’s 4-3 shootout loss to the Stanley Cup champions after tying the home match in the final 10 seconds.

Goals have been difficult to come by for the Flyers lately: They have just 15 in their previous eight games.

Their last time out — hosting the Boston Bruins on Saturday — they got a pair of second-period goals from Derick Brassard. The forward has tallied four times in 16 games.

Joel Farabee — a 20-goal scorer in 55 games a season ago — has matched Brassard’s numbers overall, but the American left winger has netted just one without an assist in his past 13 games.

“Just try to get back to basics,” said Farabee. “Obviously, points aren’t coming right now, but just trying to help in any way I can, whether it’s PK or 5-on-5.

“Just trying to be good defensively and hopefully that will change into good offensively.”

Reports are that veteran forward Kevin Hayes (undisclosed) — who has missed the last two games and did not practice Monday — will not play in Tampa or Wednesday in Sunrise against the Florida Panthers.

–Field Level Media

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Don't Miss

Community Calendar