The Tampa Bay Lightning will face off against the division-rival Carolina Hurricanes tonight in what is sure to be an important matchup for playoff positioning.
With the season already one-third of the way through, the teams are tied atop the Southeast Division with 17 points each. Tonight’s winner, then, will surely take over sole possession of the first with three more meetings between the clubs still to play.
Here are some notes leading up to the action tonight:
LINEUPS, INJURIES AND ILLNESSES
Mathieu Garon will start in net tonight for the Bolts.
Garon is 1-3-0 this season with a .911 save percentage and a 3.19 goals-against average, with his last appearance coming on February 14 against Washington.
Head coach Guy Boucher indicated that his lineup will remain the same as it was nights ago against Boston with Marc-Andre Bergeron in the lineup on defense.
Boucher praised Bergeron for his play and also noted that Keith Aulie is still getting over some effects of a stomach bug.
NOTES AND NUMBERS
-The Lightning will be searching for their second straight road victory tonight when they travel to Raleigh to take on the Carolina Hurricanes
-The Lightning are 1-1-0 on the front half of back-to-back games this season
-The Lightning have scored 14 goals over their past four games and rank first in the NHL with 61 goals this season
-Tampa Bay ranks seventh in the league as a team in faceoff percentage at 51.6%
-The Lightning own a record of 5-1-0 against Southeast Division opponents this season
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