The lower-body injury Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos is currently sidelined with is not related to the core muscle injury and surgery from last March, the team confirmed on Saturday. 

The Lightning are hopeful Stamkos will be able to return to the lineup when he's eligible to come off the long-term injured reserve on May 5. 

The 31-year-old suffered his current lower-body injury on April 8 against the Columbus Blue Jackets and hasn't played since. 

In early March of last season, Stamkos underwent surgery to repair a core muscle and was able to return for Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals, scoring one goal in limited ice time. It was the only playoff game Stamkos would play as the Lightning defeated the Stars in six games to capture their first Cup since 2004. 

Stamkos had another core muscle surgery in October before the start of the season. 

The former first overall pick has 17 goals and 17 assists over 38 games with the Bolts this season, his 13th year with the club.

Tampa is tied with the Carolina Hurricanes for first in the Central Division,