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Bolts Battle for Points Continues in Colorado

Saturday, 03.01.2014 / 6:52 PM

Missy Zielinski - Lightning Beat Reporter

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Bolts Battle for Points Continues in Colorado
Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Colorado Avalanche

LIGHTNING (34-21-5) vs. AVALANCHE (38-17-5)

Last 10:

Tampa Bay 6-4-0; Colorado 6-4-0

TV/Radio:

Sun Sports; AM 970 WFLA

Season Series:

This is the second and final meeting between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Colorado Avalanche this season. Tampa Bay took the first game, 5-2, as Tyler Johnson recorded his first career hat trick in the win. Victor Hedman also recorded three assists in the victory and Ben Bishop picked up the win in a 25-save effort.

Big Story:

Currently neck-and-neck with the Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs for second and third place seeding in the Atlantic Division, the Lightning need to stay solid on the second half of their road swing. The final two games of their road trip features two of the Top-5 teams in the Western Conference with Sunday's game versus the Avs also being the second half of a back-to-back.

Team Scope:

LIGHTNING – The Bolts initially did exactly what head coach Jon Cooper had asked of them Saturday– take more shots - and they saw immediate results with an early 2-0 lead. Martin St. Louis increased the Lightning's lead to 3-0 in the second with his second goal of the game, however the Stars were clearly holding favor in the momentum category and began to nip at Tampa Bay's heels with a 3-2 score by the end of 40 minutes of play. Despite adding only three shots on net in the third, Sami Salo's second goal of the season gave the Bolts just enough to walk away with their 17th road win of the season. Bishop picked up his 29th win in a solid 39-save effort.

With Ben Bishop starting the first of back-to-backs it is unclear if Kristers Gudlevskis will get his first career NHL start or head coach Jon Cooper will again look to Bishop. Bishop has played two games in as many nights twice already this season. Anders Lindback also played in his first game of his conditioning assignment with the Lightning's AHL affiliate the Syracuse Crunch Friday, shutting out the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins, 4-0, in a 30-save performance.

AVALANCHE – Splitting their first two games since returning from Olympic break, the Colorado Avalanche look to keep pace with the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks for first place in the Central Division. Only trailing the two clubs by three points, the Avs won their last contest, 4-2, at Jobing.com Arena in Phoenix. Two of the NHL's Top-5 in scoring since January, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog (tied for third in the league), continued to produce offensively in the victory.

MacKinnon, who continues to put up a good argument as a possible Calder Trophy candidate by extending his point streak to 10 games (five goals, nine assists), notched two assists. He becomes the first rookie to record a 10+ game point streak since Jonathan Toews did so in October of 2007. Captain Gabriel Landeskog recorded a trio of points for his third three-point game of the season and is one point shy of his career-high set in 2011-12.

Paul Stastny also added two points and Semyon Varlamov made 40 saves in the winning effort, as he now is tied for second in the league (Ben Bishop, Antti Niemi) with 29 wins.

Sunday night's game completes a three-game homestand for Colorado, who faces division rival the Blackhawks on Tuesday in Chicago.

Who's Hot:

Ondrej Palat and Martin St. Louis extended their point streaks to four and five games, respectively, and have combined for 13 points during that span. The two are tied for ninth in the NHL for points since the 2014 calendar year began.

Transactions:

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

Injury Report:

Lightning – F Valtteri Filppula (Non-displaced fracture in right ankle, day-to-day), D Brian Lee (knee, out), Steven Stamkos (broken right tibia, out); Avalanche – F Alex Tanguay (knee/hip, out for season), F David Van Der Gulik (head, out indefinitely)

2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 02 '14TBL 3 at COL 6E. Johnson
Jan 25 '14COL 2 at TBL 5V. Filppula
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. St. Louis61293160+16695
V. Filppula56202141+21442
V. Hedman54112839+74322
T. Johnson61172037+172033
O. Palat61142337+221812
A. Killorn61142135+103822
T. Purcell61102535+31034
M. Carle6122426+171810
S. Stamkos1714923+11832
R. Gudas5621416+512211
N. Kucherov388715+6833
N. Thompson608614+72301
J. Brown424913+1400
R. Malone455712-55700
S. Salo5221012+81200
R. Panik392911-81500
M. Barberio43459+142410
B. Crombeen46279+17400
E. Brewer56099+45300
A. Sustr38077+41200
T. Pyatt13235+0000
M. Kostka11235+4801
J. Cote19044+02200
B. Connolly11101-5401
D. Korobov3011+0200
P. Labrie13000-42000
K. Aulie11000-2400
D. Tyrell7000+0400
M. Taormina7000+0000
V. Namestnikov4000-1400
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
B. Bishop4729-10-49113322.05.932
A. Lindback185-11-1544513.23.880
C. Desjardins10-1-02136.67.846
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
M. Duchene58193655+11955
G. Landeskog60193352+174743
N. MacKinnon61222749+152085
R. O'Reilly59232346-1075
P. Stastny55192746+102033
P. Parenteau49121931+22811
J. McGinn58151126+02833
E. Johnson5981725+54321
T. Barrie4481624+141822
J. Mitchell6061521+62411
A. Benoit5931821-11411
M. Talbot6061420+53101
N. Holden346915+71411
J. Hejda576814+72400
A. Tanguay164711+7402
C. McLeod56279+210100
C. Sarich45189+43600
P. Bordeleau61437+16901
S. Downie11167+43611
M. Cliche55156-41700
N. Guenin49156+32800
R. Wilson22055+41200
B. Malone15022-1200
K. Stollery2000+1200
D. Van Der Gulik2000+0000
M. Hunwick1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
S. Varlamov4830-11-511415122.48.925
J. Giguere169-5-0394442.62.912
S. Aittokallio10-1-03184.50.833