|TBL||2||1||1||(0 - 0)||4|
|DAL||0||2||0||(0 - 0)||2|
LIGHTNING (33-21-5) vs. STARS (28-21-10)
Tampa Bay 5-5-0; Dallas 7-1-2
Sun Sports; AM 970 WFLA
Saturday's afternoon tilt will be the first of two meetings between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Western Conference's Dallas Stars. The Stars travel to the Tampa Bay Times Forum on April 5.
The Lightning are still in search of their 17th road win of the season, as they play the second of a four-game road trip Saturday in Dallas. Tampa Bay has only recorded five 17+ road win seasons in their 21-year history. There are also10 players on the Bolts current roster who have never played versus the Stars.
LIGHTNING – Despite the Lightning scoring two goals in the first 10 minutes of the game, compliments of captain Martin St. Louis, the energy quickly fizzled, as they managed just seven shots on net in the final 40 minutes of play Thursday in a 3-2 loss to Nashville. Head coach Jon Cooper called the last two periods of play "disgracefully embarrassing" and was mainly disappointed because with now 23 games to go on Tampa Bay's roster, it is a crucial time in the team's campaign.
Cooper will hope the message was received by Saturday afternoon with still three games to go on their road stretch that also includes the Colorado Avalanche and St. Louis Blues. The Lightning have lost four out of their last five road contests, including two straight.
The Bolts will see if Valtteri Filppula (non displaced fracture in right ankle) is ready to return to the lineup at American Airlines Center after not being set to go Thursday; Vladislav Namestnikov was slotted in in his place. With back-to-back games Saturday and Sunday there is a possibility that netminder and Team Latvia goalie, Kristers Gudlevskis, could get his first NHL star between the pipes with Anders Lindback on a conditioning assignment in Syracuse with their AHL affiliate the crunch. If he does so, he will be the first in NHL history to appear in the ECHL, AHL, NHL and Olympics all in one season.
STARS – The Stars won four out of five games in February and now they look to start March the same way. Dallas will need to stay hot if they want to remain in the playoff conversation. Currently with 66 points and in fifth place in the standings in the Central Division, the Stars best bet is to nab one of two wild card spots in the Western Conference. With the Minnesota Wild five points ahead of them claiming the first wild card spot, Dallas currently holds the second. However the next four teams below them (Phoenix Coyotes, Vancouver Canucks, Winnipeg Jets and Nashville Predators) are all less than five points behind them in the race.
Martin St. Louis' two goals extends his point streak to four games (two goals, three assists). Ondrej Palat, who added the helper on one of St. Louis' pair of goals Thursday, has also recorded points in three straight (three goals, one assist).
2/23 – Claimed D Mike Kostka off waivers from the Chicago Blackhawks
2/26 – Recalled F Vladislav Namestnikov from the Syracuse Crunch (AHL)
2/26 – Reassigned G Anders Lindback to the Syracuse Crunch (AHL) for conditioning assignment
|Apr 05 '14||DAL 5 at TBL 2||T. Seguin|
|Mar 01 '14||TBL 4 at DAL 2||M. St. Louis|
|M. St. Louis||60||29||31||60||+17||6||9||5|