But the team still hasn’t closed the door on the star sniper appearing at some point in the championship series against the Dallas Stars — although it likely won’t happen in Game 1.
Stamkos was injured during Phase 2 skates before the NHL returned to play in late July and has been rehabbing his undisclosed injury in the bubble since, first in Toronto and now Edmonton. He was shut down before the season was paused in March after having core muscle surgery but was expected to play in the playoffs before this new injury occurred.
The Lighting have been carried offensively in the playoffs by Nikita Kucherov, Brayden Point and Victor Hedman, but a healthy Stamkos would still be a big addition to the lineup. In 57 games this season, the 30-year-old had 29 goals and 66 points.
Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final is Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET/ 4:30 p.m. PT on Sportsnet.