|TBL||1||0||0||0||(0 - 0)||1|
|NYI||0||1||0||1||(0 - 0)||2|
Lightning (19-10-4, 42 Points) at Islanders (6-18-6, 18 Points)
Last 10: Tampa Bay (6-2-2); New York (2-6-2)
Season Series: The Lightning and Islanders meet tonight for the second-to-last contest in the four-game season series. Tampa Bay has been perfect against New York this season, earning a pair of wins on Oct. 21 at the St. Pete Times Forum and Nov. 17 on Long Island. The two clubs will face off for the final time on Mar. 22 in Tampa Bay.
The Big Story: The two clubs have been heading in opposite directions lately. Tampa Bay enters the contest on four-game winning streak and has points in five straight, while New York has lost seven of eight and have won more than two consecutive games just once this season when it won three straight during the second week of the season. A win on Monday helped the Lightning keep pace with Atlanta in the division race, as both the Bolts and Washington sit behind the Thrashers by just a single point for first place.
LIGHTNING – Tampa Bay departs for a three-game road trip that runs through Christmas after wrapping up a home stand on which it went a perfect 3-0-0. Tonight in Long Island marks the team’s first game away from home on the trip, as well as the first half of a back-to-back set. The Lightning have points in their last two road contests and have a lot of momentum coming off four straight wins, including three at home. Tampa Bay comes into tonight fresh off a 5-1 win against Carolina on Monday, in which Steven Stamkos scored his 100th career goal and became just the sixth player in NHL history to do so before his 21st birthday. He wasn’t the only one, however, who had a record night. Teammate Vincent Lecavalier also registered his 750th career point, while Martin St. Louis passed the Lightning captain for first place all-time on the franchise list with his 51st game-winning goal, scored in the final second of the first period.
ISLANDERS – New York hosts the Lightning tonight in Uniondale in the third and final game of a three-game home stand. After tonight’s game, New York will hit the road for a one-game swing in New Jersey before returning back to the Nassau Memorial Coliseum. The Islanders have lost seven of the last eight and have scored under three goals per game in each of those contests, while coming in with the second-fewest goals scored in the league with just 65. New York nearly won two straight its last time out, but was edged 4-3 by Phoenix in a shootout on Saturday. New York took a 2-1 lead into the third period, helped out by goals from Jesse Joensuu, Michael Grabner and Rob Schremp. Rookie net minder Nathan Lawson made 32 saves in his NHL debut, but that was not enough to lift the Islanders to two straight victories.
Who’s Hot: Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos has five goals and seven points in his last five games and Martin St. Louis has recorded two consecutive three-point games in his last pair of outings. Vincent Lecavalier also has points in two of the last three. New York’s Rob Schremp, John Tavares, Blake Comeau and James Wisniewski each are riding two-game point streaks.
Injury Report: LIGHTNING – Steve Downie (ankle sprain, out indefinitely, placed on Injured Reserve), Mike Smith (minor knee injury, out 2 weeks, placed on Injured Reserve), Ryan Malone (lower body, day-to-day) and Brett Clark (lower body, day-to-day); ISLANDERS – Mike Mottau (eye, out indefinitely), Rick DiPietro (knee, day-to-day), Mark Eaton (groin, out 1-2 weeks), Trent Hunter (knee, out indefinitely), Doug Weight (back, out indefinitely), Mark Streit (shoulder, out indefinitely) and Kyle Okposo (shoulder, out indefinitely).
Notable Quotable: “We’re rolling right now, things are going good, but it’s even keel. We can’t get too high or too low. We just have to keep going about our business, don’t fall in love with ourselves and keep it one game at a time.” – Martin St. Louis, on the key to maintaining the team’s success
|Mar 22 '11||NYI 5 at TBL 2||M. Martin|
|Dec 22 '10||TBL 1 at NYI 2 - ot||J. Tavares|
|Nov 17 '10||TBL 4 at NYI 2||M. St. Louis|
|Oct 21 '10||NYI 3 at TBL 2 - ot||M. Moulson|
|M. St. Louis||34||13||30||43||+3||8||1||3|