Stamkos (knee) isn't sure that he'll be ready to return by the end of the regular season, the Tampa Bay Times reports. One of the top fantasy options at center when healthy, Stamkos has been sidelined since Nov. 15. His injury -- coupled with a more recent lower-body ailment to Tyler Johnson -- has left the Bolts lacking top playmakers down the middle. It would be foolish to drop Stamkos given the off-chance that he toughs it out and returns like he did last postseason after overcoming blood clots, but this has certainly left countless fantasy owners in a tough spot given Stammer's high-profile status.
For the first time since having his right knee scoped on Nov. 17, Stamkos -- who had been working in limited capacity for three weeks -- was able to practice fully Friday, NHL.com's Corey Long reports. While that's a solid milestone for Tampa Bay's captain in his quest to return to game action, coach Jon Cooper indicated that "by no means does this [mean Stamkos'] return is imminent." That's a notion Stamkos echoes. "[I will be back] when I feel 100 percent, obviously that's not the case yet," Stamkos acknowledged Friday. "I can't pick a date because I might not feel 100 percent on that date. I've gone through stuff like this before. You start setting dates, that's when sometimes you set unrealistic goals. When I feel 100 percent I'll be back playing. I want that to be sooner than later, but that's how these injuries go."
Stamkos (knee) said he has no timetable for his return, Lightning Insider reports. The stud playmaker wouldn't say whether he expects to return before the end of the 2016-17 campaign, but did add that he's been pleased with his progress. He's four months into his rehab with Tampa Bay having only 12 games to play on the regular-season schedule; the team is on the outside looking into the playoffs.
Stamkos (knee) has reached the four-month mark in his four-to-six-month recovery from surgery, but his return is not imminent, reports the Tampa Times. Stamkos has been skating and shooting, but he has not shed the no-contact jersey. "The one way I guess to make sure he may play is to get into the playoffs," Bolts coach Jon Cooper said. There are 13 games left in the regular season, and Stamkos appears primed to miss all of them.
Stamkos (knee) has been active for two consecutive morning skates, NHL.com reports. At this point, we're wondering when Stamkos will be ready for full contact -- or better yet, when he'll return. That's actually the $1.74 million question, with such a figure representing his remaining daily cap hit this season, according to Cap Friendly. A blood clot issue limited Stamkos to one playoff game last season, and he effectively put that behind him only to suffer this significant knee injury in mid-November. Before the latest ailment, though, he'd turned in 20 points (nine goals, 11 assists) in just 17 games. There doesn't seem to be much time left to buy low on Stamkos in fantasy leagues, so consider going after the star pivot while he rounds out his recovery.
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