Lightning defenseman Ryan McDonagh walked out with an injury in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals series against Rangers. His status for Game 6 on Saturday could be up in the air.
The veteran blue liner left the team during the third half of Tampa Bay’s 3-1 win on Thursday. The injury appeared to stem from an awkward collision behind the Lightning net with Rangers forward Chris Kreider.
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Kreider turned away from McDonagh, causing McDonagh to freak out. He went down the tunnel but eventually returned to the ice and got shifts in the final five minutes of the game.
The Lightning was able to overcome his 13-minute absence despite being down to two left-footed defenders to take a 3-2 lead in the process.
“He’s a warrior,” said Lightning trainer Jon Cooper after the win. “Whatever he had to go for, he didn’t want to go, it wasn’t voluntary. But it was a decision that he came back and it’s that warrior mentality that he has and it’s probably no secret since he’s been on our team how well we’ve had some good runs here in the playoffs.”
Tampa Bay will need McDonagh on the back end as it has an opportunity to end the streak and redeem its ticket to the Stanley Cup Finals. The 32-year-old leads the team this postseason with 44 by a wide margin in blocked shots. Victor Hedman is the next closest at 30. McDonagh has one goal, three assists and 25 hits in 16 games.
MORE: When does the Stanley Cup final begin?
When is Ryan McDonagh returning?
The fact that McDonagh was able to return in Game 5 is good news for Lightning, but the extent of his injury is still unknown. Cooper said he “expects” McDonagh to be ready in Game 6.
Jon Cooper said he expects Ryan McDonagh to be ok for Game 6. He won’t find out more about Point until tomorrow
— Joe Smith (@JoeSmithTB) June 10, 2022
If he can’t play, Cal Foote will likely slip into the lineup. He was the seventh fullback to start the postseason when Cooper chose to go with 11 forwards and seven blue-liners.
When is game 6 of the Lightning Rangers series?
Game 6 of the Lightning Rangers series takes place on Saturday at 8pm ET. It takes place at the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida.
Viewers in the US can watch the game nationwide on ESPN. Canadian audiences can watch the game on Sportsnet, CBC and TVA Sports (in French).
|Game||Match||time (ET)||TV station (US)||TV station (Canada)|
|game 6||Lightning vs Rangers||8 p.m||ESPN||Sportsnet, CBC, TVA Sports|