Lightning vs. Devils: Pre-Game Notes
The Tampa Bay Lightning held a morning skate this morning at the Prudential Center in New Jersey, just hours prior to tonight’s puck drop against the Devils at 7 p.m.
INJURY UPDATES & LINEUPS
BJ Crombeen did not skate this morning at the session, and although he has been medically cleared to play, head coach Guy Boucher has still not made a decision as of noon today whether or not Crombeen will be in the lineup. That, of course, could change however as the hours pass leading up to the start of tonight’s contest.
For the Devils, forward Dainius Zubrus will be out of tonight’s game and will not play, according to the team’s media relations staff.
Lindback gets the green light in goal tonight. He also played in the team’s most recent game in Philadelphia on Tuesday night. On the season, Lindback has recorded a 5-2-0 record with a 2.73 goals-against average and a .912 save percentage. His win total enters tonight’s action ranked seventh in the NHL.
NOTES AND NUMBERS
• The Lightning went 1-3-0 against New Jersey last season, with their one victory coming on February 26 at the Prudential Center
• A Lightning player has recorded a hat trick in each of the team’s last two games against the Devils. Ryan Malone notched a three-goal game back on March 29, 2012, just one month after Martin St. Louis tallied a hat trick on February 26.
• The Lightning rank first in the NHL with 40 goals this season, 18 of which have come in the third period, ranking first in the NHL.
• Tampa Bay has notched four or more goals in a game in six of their first nine games this season
• The Bolts' +17 goal differential ranks first in the NHL
• The Lightning have given up the fewest goals in the Southeast Division with 23 goals against
Today marks Steven Stamkos’ 23rd birthday, and per Elias Sports Bureau, Stamkos ranks fourth in NHL history amongst all goal scorers through age 22:
Wayne Gretzky 329
Dale Hawerchuk 220
Mario Lemieux 215
Steven Stamkos 186
QUOTES TO NOTE
Guy Boucher on the status of BJ Crombeen:
“I need to talk to him. He’s fine. He’s got the green light to go, so we will assess it.”
Guy Boucher on how important being patient is against the Devils:
“Well they’ve always been difficult to beat because defensively they got numbers back and they wait for you to make mistakes and they don’t over-challenge you. That’s why these games are always very tight and very close.”
Guy Boucher on the possible outcomes of tonight’s game:
“Our last game we sabotaged ourselves. If a team is going to beat us, they’re going to have to manufacture something.”