TAMPA — The Tampa Bay Lightning learned Thursday that goalie Ben Bishop (sprained right wrist) is eligible to come off the injured reserve list Monday.
Bishop, who is 22-5 in the net and one of the league’s best this season, injured his hand during the first period of Sunday’s loss at Edmonton. Bishop ranks tied for first in the NHL for shutouts (4) and is also first in save percentage (.935).
The news came as a relief to Bishop, whose 10-game win streak in regulation ties the second-best in franchise history.
“Yeah, it’s good,” Bishop said Thursday. “I just have to tape it and see how it feels, moving forward. (It’ll be) a couple days before I can play again, so we’ll have a good gauge before Tuesday.”
Bishop said he took a shot off the arm during warm-ups Sunday and may have aggravated it when his stick got tangled in the legs of teammate Tyler Johnson.
“I dropped my stick and I couldn’t grab and I was just hoping it wasn’t broken,” Bishop said.
Bishop said he will continue to ice his wrist and rest it. Lightning coach Jon Cooper wasn’t as quick to say Thursday’s news was a sigh of relief.
“The concern will end when he comes in and says, ‘Coach, I’m ready to go,’ ” he said.
Bishop would be eligible for the Lightning’s road game at the New York Rangers.
“Hopefully by that time he’s ready to go,” Cooper said.
Aulie returns to ice; Brown day-to-day
D Keith Aulie participated in Thursday’s morning skate, the most action he’s seen since breaking his hand Dec. 5 against Ottawa.
“(With a) hand injury, you kind of keep your legs in shape, but nothing compared to getting out there and practicing with the guys,” Aulie said. “It feels good right now to be with the guys.”
Aulie, who has missed the last 15 games, said he feels no pain in the hand.
“It’s one of those injuries when you’re waiting for the doctor to say it’s healthy,” he said. “It’s one of those things where it feels great but it’s not quite healed yet. You just got to give it time.”
Meanwhile, RW J.T. Brown was scratched from Thursday’s game as he continues to recover from a shoulder injury he sustained at Edmonton. Brown was also held from Tuesday’s game at Winnipeg.
“It feels good, just waiting a little longer, making sure,” Brown said. “But most definitely feeling better than it did at first.”
Cooper said Brown should be ready to play Saturday against the Flyers.
Zettler, Connolly in AHL All-Star game
Head coach Rob Zettler and RW Brett Connolly of the Lightning’s AHL affiliate Syracuse Crunch have been selected for the 2014 AHL All-Star Classic on Feb. 11-12 at the Mile One Centre in St. John’s, Newfoundland.
Zettler will coach the AHL All-Stars when they face off against Färjestad BK of the Swedish Hockey League. Connolly ranks third on the Crunch among active players in scoring with nine goals and 14 assists in the 24 games he appeared in this season. He has also appeared in 11 games with the Tampa Bay Lightning where he recorded one point.