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Victor Hedman’s health among potentially troubling issues facing NHL playoff teams

  • May 11, 2021

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The Lightning will get back high-scoring forwards Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos for the playoffs, but Hedman being out or less than 100% will hurt against a Panthers team that has won six in a row.

Which other teams are showing potentially troubling signs heading into the playoffs?

New York Islanders

They have not beaten a current playoff team since a 1-0 victory against the Washington Capitals on April 6. That tied them for first place in the East Division and they aggressively acquired Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac the next day from the New Jersey Devils. But they have dropped to fourth place, with Palmieri getting two goals and two assists in 17 games and Zajac one goal and one assist in 13 games. They miss the leadership of captain Anders Lee, who’s done for the season. They had a scare Monday when goalie Semyon Varlamov didn’t play in the third period, but coach Barry Trotz said it was a minor strain that wouldn’t have kept him out of a playoff game.

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