Time: 7:30 Eastern Time
Location: Amalie Arena
Broadcast / Streaming: SUN, PRIME
Opponent SBNation Site: Anaheim Calling
The Lightning and Ducks both played on Thursday night in the state of Florida. The Bolts, of course, beat the Red Wings by a score of 3-2 to improve to 6-0-0 at Amalie Arena this year. The score makes it seem like the game was a lot closer than it should’ve been—the refs’ fingers were all over this one. As for the Ducks, they are coming off of a disastrous outing in south Florida, where the Panthers shelled them for 8 goals, while the once-mighty Ducks potted 3 of their own.
The Ducks (4-4-1) fell to 1-1-0 on their current four-game road trip, which will wrap up in Raleigh tomorrow at 5 pm. I dislike how teams have to play on back-to-back nights when significant travel is involved. Just don’t think it’s fair at all. However, I selfishly love when the NHL’s Scheduling Guru—whomever that may be—schedules Team X to play the Panthers on one night and then makes them travel up I-75 to play the Bolts two nights later.
The Ducks have been ravaged with early season injuries thus far. Kevin Bieksa, Ryan Miller, Sami Vatanen, Ryan Kesler, and Cam Folwer will not play tonight. Those are some big names for a tough Anaheim club. Patrick Eaves (who was acquired for a conditional second-rounder, which eventually become a first-rounder due to Anaheim’s postseason success, at last season’s trade deadline from the Dallas Stars) will also not suit up, because he was just diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome.
As for the Lightning, the 11/7 lineup continues to work wonders. J.T. Brown has played really well these last two games, after having been a healthy scratch since October 7th in the Lightning’s only regulation loss (5-4) in Sunrise. The Bolts (9-1-1) will look to remain perfect on home ice against what should be a pissed-off Ducks club. The power play is red hot; Stamkos and Kucherov are sporting matching 11-game point streaks, and Vasilevskiy is riding an 8-game win streak himself, which includes a .964 save percentage in his last 6 outings. Purely insane.
The power plays of both of these clubs are polar opposites. Tampa Bay is converting on 31.1% of chances thus far, which includes 14 power play goals, pacing the NHL. Anaheim, however, has only scored 2 power play goals on 31 chances—good for 30th in the League and a 6.5% conversion rate.
Both clubs ranked in the top half in penalty killing—Anaheim in 11th with an 84.1% kill rate and Tampa Bay in 13th with an 82.6% kill rate. If Anaheim cannot stay out of the box against the Bolts, it could be a very long night for Randy Carlyle’s club.
Tampa Bay Lightning:
Vladislav Namestnikov — Steven Stamkos — Nikita Kucherov
Ondrej Palat — Brayden Point — Yanni Gourde
Alex Killorn — Tyler Johnson
Chris Kunitz — J.T. Brown — Ryan Callahan
Victor Hedman — Jake Dotchin
Mikhail Sergachev — Anton Stralman
Braydon Coburn — Dan Girardi
Peter Budaj first goalie off the ice from morning skate. Looks like he'll get his 2nd start of the season tonight when #Bolts host Anaheim.— Bryan Burns (@BBurnsNHL) October 28, 2017
Full house for #Bolts morning skate today, other than Paquette, who remains out w/ an upper-body injury. He was skating earlier by himself.— Bryan Burns (@BBurnsNHL) October 28, 2017
Would really love to see Koekkoek step in tonight. Sustr played a team-low 6:55 on Thursday and, per usual, was, let’s just say—weak.
Rickard Rakell — Ryan Getzlaf — Corey Perry
Andrew Cogliano — Antoine Vermette — Jakob Silfverberg
Nick Ritchie — Derek Grant — Ondrej Kase
Chris Wagner — Kalle Kossila — Logan Shaw
Hampus Lindholm — Josh Manson
Francois Beauchemin — Brandon Montour
Jaycob Megna — Korbinian Holzer