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Tampa Bay 5-4-1; Rangers 6-4-0
Sun Sports; AM 970 WFLA
This is the first of three meetings between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Metropolitan Division foe, the New York Rangers. The Bolts dropped all three meetings to the Rangers last year, being outscored by a span of 12-4. The last time Tampa Bay won at home versus the Blueshirts was on March 2, 2012 in a 4-3 overtime victory.
The Lightning return to the Tampa Bay Forums on a four-game skid, but play five of their next six at the Times Forum where they are 8-2-0. The Rangers six-game road winning streak is their longest winning streak on the road since the 1993-94 campaign, as the Blueshirts are tied for eighth in the NHL in road wins (12).
LIGHTNING – Tampa Bay is battling through a tough stretch and their first losing streak of the season, but they hope returning to the Times Forum will be a good change of pace. Riding a five-game winning streak at home, the Lightning have outscored opponents 16-8 in their past four games at the Times Forum, compared to being outscored on the road 17-6 over that same span.
The Bolts must return to their defensive-minded style, which first resurfaced in their latest loss in overtime, 1-0, to the Anaheim Ducks. Also going 1-for-13 on the power-play on their road swing, the Lightning look to reignite the man-advantage this week and to capitalize on opportunities after seeing many missed chances last week.
Martin St. Louis will be honored for playing in his 1,000th game Monday, which he did last Tuesday in Los Angeles.
RANGERS – After starting the season off struggling in big part due to seasoned goalie, Henrik Lundqvist, the Rangers have gotten back on track in November, going 7-4-0 in the month so far. First-year goalie Cam Talbot and the improved play of Lundqvist have both been key in their resurgence, which puts them at third in their respective division’s standings.
They also have the eighth-best penalty kill in the league, where they have allowed just four goals over their past 30 kills. New York continues their defensive-minded play Monday, riding a 2-0 victory in Talbot’s second consecutive shutout and fifth straight win.
Despite the loss Friday, goaltender Ben Bishop has won six of his past nine starts and was also named one of the games’ three stars in six of his past nine starts. Rangers’ netminder Cam Talbot has extended his winning streak to five games, while posting his second consecutive shutout.
Lightning – D Keith Aulie (upper body, day-to-day), D Radko Gudas (upper body, day-to-day), D Brian Lee (knee, out), F Ryan Malone (lower body, day-to-day), F Tom Pyatt (broken collarbone, out), F Steven Stamkos (broken right tibia, out); Rangers – Taylor Pyatt (concussion, out)
Recent Lightning Transactions:
11/22 Reassigned Forward Brett Connolly to the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)
11/24 Recalled Defenseman Dmitry Korobov from the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)
11/24 Recalled Forward Nikita Kucherov from the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)
Twitter Stat Pack:
Despite having his four-game point streak snapped, @TJohnny09 ranks eighth in the @NHL among rookies for goals (5) and is tied for eighth in points (11).
At the time of his recall to the #TBLightning, @Kucher86 led the @SyracuseCrunch in goals (13) and points (24) through 17 games.
The #Bolts @Bugsy12Malone and @mattcarle25 both made their #TBLightning debuts vs. the Rangers on Oct. 4, 2008.
Skating in a season high 25:36 TOI on Friday against the Ducks, @Heds77 is one goal shy of tying his career-high of five goals set in ’11-’12.
“Everyone was just glad to get home. The Anaheim game at home was just an extension of our road trip. Our road trip started two weeks ago in Detroit and it’s been non-stop. Spirits are good, the work ethic is there and guys were zipping around today. They’re just exciting to sleep in their own beds and excited to play in front of their fans.” – Head coach Jon Cooper on returning from their west coast swing
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