Vincent Trocheck‘s status is uncertain for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Second Round against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday (8 p.m. ET; USA, TVAS, SN).
The forward is being evaluated for an unspecified injury sustained late in the second period of a 2-1 loss in Game 2 on Tuesday, Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said Wednesday.
“He’s getting some sort of scan or something,” he said. “We’ll know more on that.”
Trocheck collided with teammate Warren Foegele with 1:28 remaining. He put no weight on his right leg as he struggled to get to the bench and went to the locker room. Trocheck came out to start the third period and played one 16-second shift before going to the locker room again.
“It doesn’t look good,” Brind’Amour said after the game. “I don’t know exactly the extent of it at this point, but he obviously couldn’t continue, so that’s never good. He would play if he could. That’s another challenge we’re going to have to overcome, but I’ll know more tomorrow, hopefully.”
The Hurricanes were already without forward Nino Niederreiter, who has missed two games with an upper-body injury he sustained at practice Saturday and will not be on the trip to Tampa. Brind’Amour said Sunday that Niederreiter is “very, very doubtful” for the remainder of the series.
Carolina, which trails the best-of-7 series, has scored two goals in two games, none at even strength.
“Obviously, Nino missing the first two games, it feels there’s a bit of a hole there, maybe,” Hurricanes goalie Alex Nedeljkovic said. “We were missing something. Then losing ‘Tro’ in the second period. They’re both big parts of our offense and not even (just) offense. Tro takes a lot of face-offs, power play, PK, 5-on-5, big face-offs in our own end. So it’s two big pieces, but we’ve been battling injuries all year with just regular injuries or guys missing time due to COVID. Whoever it is, the guys are really confident with whoever comes in and are confident they’ll step up and fill those voids.”
Trocheck scored 43 points (17 goals, 26 assists) in 47 regular-season games this season; he was out from March 10-29 with an upper-body injury. He has scored three points (two goals, one assist) in eight Stanley Cup Playoff games.
“It’s obviously not nice to see your buddy go down,” Hurricanes forward Sebastian Aho said. “We’ve been missing players, big players, a lot of players at the same time. But it’s always the next man up. obviously, ‘Troch’ is a great player. You can’t just think like one guy has to do all the work for him. It’s always how the team responds, and every guy has a little bit more. That’s how you do it. Injuries are part of the game and you just have to deal with them.”
Niederreiter scored 34 points (20 goals, 14 assists) in 56 regular-season games and has scored one goal in six playoff games.