After incurring a hip injury, Tampa Bay Lightning star Nikita Kucherov has been ruled out of action for the 2020-21 NHL regular season. The forward is expected to undergo surgery next week.
On Wednesday, Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois made the following announcement regarding Kucherov’s injury: “Our hope, and it’s a realistic hope, based on the expected timeline of recovery for this type of surgery, is that he would be ready for the playoffs. I know how much it pains him that he will be missing the regular season. I also know how hard he’s going to work to get back as soon as possible.”
The Russian player has been the Lightning’s leading scorer in each of the past five seasons. He scored 85 points (33 goals, 52 assists) in 68 games last season. He also led the NHL scorers’ charts in the postseason, with 34 points (seven goals, 27 assists) in 25 games, proving himself to be instrumental in his team’s Stanley Cup success.
During the 2018-19 season, Kucherov won the Hart Trophy for being the NHL MVP. Since the start of his tenure with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Kucherov has scored 529 points (212 goals, 317 points) in 463 games.