Panthers' Ryan Lomberg suspended one game for instigating fight in loss to Lightning

Florida Panthers left wing Ryan Lomberg. Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Florida Panthers have little to complain about in the final full week of April, as they have already clinched the best record in the Eastern Conference ahead of the postseason tournament. However, Florida will be without one noteworthy individual for an upcoming game due to his actions on Sunday.

On Monday, the NHL announced that Panthers forward Ryan Lomberg has been suspended for one game without pay for instigating a fight during the final five minutes of Sunday's 8-4 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. Lomberg will forfeit $3,625 in salary for his crime, and Florida head coach Andrew Brunette was also fined $10,000.

"Both the suspension to the player and the fine of the coach are automatic for a violation of Rule 46.21," the league's Department of Player Safety explained.

According to Sportsnet, the Panthers and Lightning combined for 90 penalty minutes in what became a wild contest that could ultimately serve as a playoff preview.

"The playoffs are like on steroids to what we saw tonight," Lightning coach Jon Cooper told reporters after his team's victory. "You've got to be ready and games like this help you."

Florida has three regular-season games left on its schedule and will play at the Boston Bruins on Tuesday. As for Lomberg, he's tallied nine goals and eight assists across 53 contests on the campaign.

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