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Lightning, Sharks Evolve Since November Meeting

Saturday, 01.18.2014 / 9:17 AM

Missy Zielinski - Lightning Beat Reporter

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Lightning, Sharks Evolve Since November Meeting
San Jose Sharks vs. Tampa Bay Lightning

SHARKS (30-12-6) vs. LIGHTNING (28-15-5)

Last 10:

San Jose 6-4-0; Tampa Bay 5-4-1

TV/Radio:

Sun Sports; AM 970 WFLA

Season Series:

This is the second and final meeting between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the San Jose Sharks and the only contest at the Tampa Bay Times Forum this year. Facing each other at the SAP Center on a West Coast swing in November, the Bolts lost 5-1 in their third of a season-high seven straight road losses.

Big Story:

Tampa Bay attempts to snap a four-game home losing streak which dates back to the end of December. Despite dropping four consecutive games at the Times Forum, the Lightning have lost by one goal in each of those games.

Team Scope:

LIGHTNING – The first half of January has proved to be a grueling run for the Lightning, who not only went on a 10-day road trip to start the month, but are also in search of their first home win in 2014. Though being on the wrong end of yet another decision Thursday against the New York Islanders at the Times Forum, head coach Jon Cooper was not unhappy with the team's performance, saying it really could have gone either way in a 2-1 shootout loss.

Having a team-centered atmosphere while away from Tampa Bay, being home provides its own dose of distractions that the Bolts must try to overcome with three out of their next four games at the Times Forum. Saturday's game against the Sharks is also the first half of back-to-backs during a stretch of five game in seven nights that will conclude on Sunday afternoon in Carolina against the Hurricanes.

SHARKS – Winning three out of their last four games on the road, the Sharks were victorious in their latest tilt in Sunrise, 3-0, versus the Florida Panthers. Captain Joe Thornton opened up the scoring with just his sixth goal of the season despite being sixth in the league for points with 51, while young backup netminder, Alex Stalock, earned his first career shutout. It is a promising sign for a San Jose team that is known for consistency, especially in light a series of injuries that includes rookie sensation Tomas Hertl and arguably their best player Logan Couture.

With constant shuffling of their forward lines the Sharks have taken on a more defensive approach with the absence of some of their stars missing from the lineup. Through the injuries San Jose is trying to find depth, something the Bolts have relied on heavily this season for similar reasons.

Who's Hot:

With the lone goal in regulation time on Thursday against the Islanders, captain Martin St. Louis has points in six straight games (four goals, three assists) and is currently leading the team in points (44). Center Tyler Johnson has also recorded a point in nine of his past 12 games.

Transactions:

1/13 – Reassigned G Cedrick Desjardins to the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)

1/16 – Reassigned D Andrej Sustr to the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)

Injury Report:

Lightning – D Keith Aulie (upper body, day-to-day), D Brian Lee (knee, out), F Steven Stamkos (broken right tibia, out); Sharks – F Adam Burrish (back, out), F Logan Couture (upper body, day-to-day), D Scott Hannan (out), F Martin Havalat (lower body, out), F Tomas Hertl (knee, out).

2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Jan 18 '14 SJS 5 at TBL 4 J. Pavelski
Nov 21 '13 TBL 1 at SJS 5 B. Stuart
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
J. Thornton4964652+131021
J. Pavelski49252348+111891
P. Marleau49212546+101272
L. Couture43142135+131232
B. Burns36141428+211412
T. Hertl35151025+11233
T. Wingels4491524+92603
J. Demers4632023+82010
D. Boyle4281422-31661
M. Vlasic4941317+171800
T. Kennedy4441115-22801
M. Nieto374913+1601
M. Irwin3421113+11710
J. Braun493912+181211
A. Desjardins482911-17001
B. Stuart41358+52503
S. Hannan33358+13500
M. Havlat22358+5600
J. Sheppard39156-32100
B. Kearns12314+1410
M. Brown35224-76200
M. Pelech6101+12201
J. McCarthy30011-11400
F. Hamilton11000-5200
E. Hayes7000+0200
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
A. Niemi4225-10-69811322.39.913
A. Stalock116-2-0162581.80.938
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. St. Louis49252449+15484
V. Filppula49181937+31441
T. Purcell4992231+4433
T. Johnson49121729+101433
A. Killorn49121628+93421
V. Hedman43101626+53522
S. Stamkos1714923+11832
M. Carle4912223+141610
O. Palat4991322+151602
R. Gudas4421214+69611
R. Malone335611+05300
R. Panik392911-81500
N. Kucherov267310+7433
J. Brown304610+1000
N. Thompson48369+72100
S. Salo40167+61000
B. Crombeen37167+35800
E. Brewer44077+24500
A. Sustr38077+41200
M. Barberio31055+131600
J. Cote15044+11700
B. Connolly11101-5401
T. Pyatt7011+1000
D. Korobov3011+0200
P. Labrie13000-42000
D. Tyrell7000+0400
M. Taormina7000+0000
K. Aulie6000-3400
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
B. Bishop3523-6-4649781.90.935
A. Lindback175-10-1504243.16.882