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The Tampa Bay Lightning are facing a pivotal Game 6 on Sunday night in which they could lose a chance at winning the Stanley Cup for the third time should the Colorado Avalanche seal the deal.
Brayden Point has only played in two games during the series and, after being injured in Game 2, he is likely to miss a third straight matchup. Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said he will go with the same lineup he used in Game 5.
Point suffered a lower-body injury in the first round against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 7 and the first two games against Colorado were the only two he’s played since then.
“It’s tricky too because players are used to playing at a certain way, or how they feel they can play. If they don’t feel confident in playing at the caliber they’re used to, it almost works against them,” Cooper said, via NHL.com. “So, it’s unfortunate because it’s a severe injury and at this time of the year, everybody’s trying to get back into the lineup and there are just some things you can’t do. When you can’t do what you’re used to doing, it’s tough on a player.
“That’s been part of our issue here. So, he’s still plugging along here and rehabbing and trying to get better. Who knows? If the series goes one more game, you never know. It’s tough on these guys because they’re such competitors.”
Cooper said Point could play in Game 7, should the Lightning beat the Avalanche at home.
Point played in 66 games during the regular season, scoring 28 goals and recording 30 assists.
The puck will drop at 8 p.m. ET at the Amalie Arena.