It was an optional skate for the Tampa Bay Lightning, so Steven Stamkos took the option. Almost an hour later, as one of the last players on the ice, he returned to the Lightning dressing room, and announced … nothing had changed.

“No update,” said Stamkos, who remains out for the Lightning after surgery to correct a blood clot.

Does ‘no update’ mean there’s nothing new on the potential for him to play in the Eastern Conference Final, which reaches Game 5 on Sunday night?

“Correct,” he said.

Is it possible that there might be some new news from Stamkos in the next few days?

“I don’t see any likely scenario. No,” he said.

That last answer is significant. TSN insider Bob McKenzie asked, rhetorically, if Stamkos would be back for Game 5 or perhaps Game 6 on Tuesday night. (Please read McKenzie’s in-depth look at Stamkos and his blood clot recovery from Thursday.)