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Tampa Bay Lightning at New York Rangers preview: The Bolts go for their tenth straight win

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Meanwhile, the Rangers’ tank is in full swing.

NHL: Tampa Bay Lightning at New York Rangers Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Lightning at New York Rangers: GAME 64

Time: 7:30 pm Eastern Time

Location: Amalie Arena

Broadcast/Streaming: NBCSN

Opponent SBNation Site: Blueshirt Banter

Preview:

It’s been just over three weeks since the last time the Tampa Bay Lightning played the New York Rangers, but this is nowhere close to the same Rangers team. For one, the team dealt nearly all of their available players to contending teams (shockingly, none to the Bolts). For another, in the eleven games since their last meeting, the Rangers haven’t had consecutive wins.

Rangers head coach David Quinn spoke yesterday on a couple of lineup decisions regarding tonight’s game:

Lemieux, who was acquired in the trade for Kevin Hayes, will actually take Chytil’s spot in the lineup. As for Chytil, it appears he may be looking at an extended stint in the press box. Other than that swap, the lineup should be similar to the one New York iced on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the Lightning hit 100 points on Monday with their shootout win over the Kings. A mostly strong effort was derailed by the team blowing a 2-0 lead in a shaky third period. But the victory marked their ninth straight — and they’ll try to make it a tenth tonight.

Nothing seems to have changed on the Lightning front, aside from their usual blueline rotation. They may be 13 points up on the second team in the league (17 up on the next team in the East), but they can’t afford to get complacent and sloppy. They were able to escape with a win against LA, but that won’t work against better teams.

They’re playing a very similar team (in standings situation) tonight in the Rangers. This is a chance for the Lightning to put together a more complete game against a weak opponent and show that Monday night was a one-off lapse.

Barring a standout performance by Henrik Lundqvist, this is a game the Lightning should win. And they should feel some pressure to do so because this is the first night of a road back-to-back. They have a tough game in Boston on Thursday and if they falter against the Rangers, could easily find themselves in a position to lose two games in a row.

Tampa Bay Lightning

Forwards

Ondrej Palat- Steven Stamkos - J.T. Miller

Tyler Johnson - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn - Anthony Cirelli - Yanni Gourde

Adam Erne - Cedric Paquette - Ryan Callahan

Scratched: Mathieu Joseph, Danick Martel

Defense

Victor Hedman - Dan Girardi

Ryan McDonagh - Erik Cernak

Mikhail Sergachev - Anton Stralman

Scratched: Braydon Coburn

Goalies

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Louis Domingue

New York Rangers

Forwards

Chris Kreider - Mika Zibanejad - Jimmy Vesey

Vladislav Namestnikov - Ryan Strome - Jesper Fast

Brendan Lemieux - Lias Andersson - Pavel Buchnevich

Connor Brickley - Boo Nieves - Brendan Smith

Injured: Brett Howden

Scratched: Filip Chytil

Defense

Brady Skjei - Neal Pionk

Marc Staal - Anthony DeAngelo

Frederik Claesson - Kevin Shattenkirk

Goalies

Alexandar Georgiev

Henrik Lundqvist