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Bishop confirms elbow dislocation following loss to Habs

Apr 22, 2014, 10:25 PM EDT

benbishopgetty Getty Images

Finally, confirmation on the injury that sidelined Ben Bishop for the entirety of Tampa Bay’s opening-round loss to Montreal — he suffered a dislocated elbow in the Bolts’ fourth from last game of the regular season against Toronto.

Per TSN’s Darren Dreger, the injury — which cost Bishop seven games in total — wasn’t severe enough to prevent the Lightning netminder from ruling out a return in the opening round. Should Tampa have extended the series beyond four, Bishop reportedly would’ve tried to get back in for either Game 5 or 6.

But following tonight’s sweep, that point is moot.

It’s going to be hard for Tampa bay not to wonder how different the outcome would’ve been with Bishop in goal. Anders Lindback was exposed against Montreal, twice getting pulled while finishing with very pedestrian numbers — an .881 save percentage and 3.91 GAA. In fact, one could argue that third-stringer Kristers Gudlevskis, who made a name for himself with Latvia at the Winter Olympics, would’ve given the Bolts a better chance at winning a game, as Gudlevskis stopped 16 of 17 shots in the Game 4 loss, good for a .941 save percentage.

But regardless of who was in goal — either Lindback or Gudlevskis — it’s clear Tampa wasn’t going to get the same goaltending it enjoyed during the regular season with Bishop. The NHL’s tallest netminder put forth a Vezina-caliber season, going 37-14-7 (4th in the NHL in wins) with a 2.23 GAA (7th), .924 save percentage (7th) and five shutouts (5th).

Looking ahead, it’ll be interesting to see if Bishop is named one of the three Vezina finalists, and if he can build on this year’s success next season — the final of his two-year, $4.6 million deal with the Bolts. Bishop will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of 2014-15.

  1. trbowman - Apr 23, 2014 at 1:06 AM

    It’s hard not to think they win at least game four with Kristers – and maybe game one and three too. We’ll never know for sure, though.

    The whole team was outplayed by MTL, but Lindback was atrocious and letting in a good share of softies. He legit looked uncomfortable in net for the most part, even when making saves. They need to part ways with that guy.

    Montreal probably wins this series no matter what, because they were the much better team. With that said, the officiating was an embarrassment when the series shifted towards Montreal. The NHL should be ashamed. If this officiating happened against a big market like Boston/NY we’d be hearing A LOT more about it, but since it’s Tampa….

    Anyway, nuff said.

  2. michael91148 - Apr 23, 2014 at 8:47 AM

    Even during the regular season the Lightning couldn’t/wouldn’t play 60 minutes. Often relying on furious 3rd period action to gain a tie (and subsequent o/t win) or a win. That is a weakness that must be addressed in the future if they would like to play more than 4 playoff games each year. Also, it is time to euthenize the defense !!!!!!! NEVER do they stand up for their goalie when opposing players are standing in the crease. ALL other NHL teams absolutely manhandle anyone daring to encroach on their goaltender. And, the only people in front of the net seem to be opposing players, uncontested. Having said all of that, there are some great youngsters that may well improve to a level that will make them a force to deal with. The departure of St Louis is the best thing that has happened to the Lightning in years (IMO)…… no more selfishness and more team play will definitely result. Too bad Callahan will probably be moving on…. loved his play.
    BTW Stammer…… I will remember the punch on Emilin for the entire summer with a smile.
    And finally, the refereeing has been atrocious all year, for all teams. The commissioner has managed to turn hockey into basketball….. penalized for minor infractions at every opportunity, whether real or imagined. It’s not hockey anymore… it is something else that isnt much fun to watch during the regular season.

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