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Tampa Bay Lightning at Toronto Maple Leafs preview: High-octane offense and injured defensemen

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It’s Tampa’s first trip to Toronto this season.

NHL: Tampa Bay Lightning at Toronto Maple Leafs Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Lightning at Toronto Maple Leafs: GAME 70

Time: 7:30 pm Eastern Time

Location: Scotiabank Arena

Broadcast/Streaming: SUN, SNO, TVAS

Opponent SBNation Site: Pension Plan Puppets

Preview:

The Tampa Bay Lightning arrive in Toronto for their first of three remaining road trips and 13 games left in the season. They just wrapped up a 3-1-0 homestand with a 3-2 victory against Detroit; one that saw Nikita Kucherov set another record and Louis Domingue record another win.

The Maple Leafs have won three of their last four games despite missing two of their top six defensemen in Jake Gardiner and Travis Dermott. The defensive performances haven’t always been pretty, but their offense has been solid and they’ve gotten good goaltending from Frederik Andersen.

This will be the third meeting between the two teams (both previous games have been played in Tampa). The Bolts have split the season series with Toronto, but haven’t always played their best game against the Leafs this season. However, Toronto’s depleted blueline will provide the Lightning with the perfect opportunity to play their game and take advantage of defensive miscues.

Tampa’s blueline is also struggling with injuries, as they are missing both Anton Stralman and Dan Girardi. That has spelled the end of the defensive rotation for the moment, but with the Bolts 15 points up on the next team in the division, they should be able to weather the storm for the time being.

It should be a high-paced, fast-skating game, but whichever team can put forth the better defensive effort likely walk away with two points.

Tampa Bay Lightning

Forwards

Ondrej Palat - Steven Stamkos - J.T. Miller

Tyler Johnson - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn - Anthony Cirelli - Mathieu Joseph

Adam Erne - Cedric Paquette - Yanni Gourde

Scratched: Danick Martel, Ryan Callahan

Defense

Victor Hedman - Mikhail Sergachev

Ryan McDonagh - Erik Cernak

Braydon Coburn - Jan Rutta

Injured: Anton Stralman, Dan Girardi

Goalies

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Louis Domingue

Toronto Maple Leafs

Forwards

Zach Hyman - John Tavares - Mitch Marner

Andreas Johnsson - Auston Matthews - Kasperi Kapanen

Patrick Marleau - Nazem Kadri - William Nylander

Tyler Ennis - Frederik Gauthier - Connor Brown

Scratched: Nic Petan, Trevor Moore

Defense

Morgan Rielly - Ron Hainsey

Jake Muzzin - Nikita Zaitsev

Martin Marincin - Igor Ozhiganov

Scratched: Justin Holl

Injured: Jake Gardiner, Travis Dermott

Goalies

Frederik Andersen

Garret Sparks