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Tampa Bay Lightning at St. Louis Blues Preview and Game Day Thread: It’s been awhile

November ends against a really good Western Conference team.

NHL: NOV 19 Lightning at Blues

Tampa Bay Lightning at St. Louis Blues: GAME #21

Time: 8:00 pm Eastern Time

Location: Enterprise Center

Broadcast/Streaming: ESPN+, Hulu

Opponent SBNation Site: St. Louis Game Time

It’s been just over two years since the St. Louis Blues and the Tampa Bay Lightning have faced each other. If you’re keeping score that was two Lightning Stanley Cups one one Raw Charge editor ago! On November 27th, 2019 the Blues defeated the Lightning in Tampa, 4-3. Brayden Schenn scored the eventual game-winner on the power play.

Series Notes:

In 45 games all-time, the Lightning are 14-24-3-4. They’ve scored 118 goals while conceding 148. Martin St. Louis has the most points by a Lightning player against the Blues, posting 17 points in 15 games (4 goals, 13 assists).

The Enterprise Center has not been kind to them as they are 3-12-0-2 in the Blues current arena, scoring just 36 goals in those 17 games.

The teams first met on October 13th, 1992, a 2-1 Lightning win at the old St. Louis Arena. Rob DiMaio and Brian Bradley scored for the Bolts while Pat Jablonski stopped 35 shots to pick up the first road win in Lightning franchise history.

The Blues have won the last four meetings. The last win for the Lightning came on December 13th, 2017, a 3-0 shutout, Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov, and Tyler Johnson scored while Andrei Vasilevskiy made 32 saves for this seventh career shutout.

Notes on the St. Louis Blues:

The Blues are 11-7-3 with 25 points. They are currently second in the Central, trailing the Minnesota Wild by 4 points. They have struggled a bit lately, posting a 3-6-2 record in their last 10 games, but are a respectable 6-3-1 at home.

They are averaging 3.33 goals per game (7th most in the NHL) while conceding 2.76 goals against (13th fewest in the league). Their power play is second in the league at 29.3% trailing only the Edmonton Oilers ridiculous 37.7%. The penalty kill is down towards the bottom half of the league with just a 80.7% success rate (18th in the league).

St. Louis is slightly above water at even strength with a 50.43 CF%, but are on the wrong side of the xGF ledger at just 49.09%. Both of those numbers are middle of the pack indicating that they are riding their hot power play early in the season.

Jordan Kyrou is leading the team in points (22) and goals (9) while Robert Thomas is the most helpful forward, leading the team with 18 assists. Jordan Binnington is the top netminder with a 7-5-3 record in 15 starts. He’s posted one shutout and has a .913 SV% and 2.80 Goals Against Average.

Injuries are hitting their depth as James Neal and Klim Kostin are on injured reserve. Veteran forward David Perron is day-to-day with an upper body injury as well.

Notes on the Tampa Bay Lightning:

Following their loss on Sunday to the Minnesota Wild the Lightning are now 12-5-3 with 27 points. That seats them third in the Atlantic, trailing the Toronto Maple Leafs by 6 points. They are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games and 5-2-1 on the road.

Their offense is 10th in the league with 3.10 goals per game while they’ve only allowed 2.75 goals against per game (12th fewest). Despite some recent success their power play is still middle of the road, connecting at a 18.3% rate (16th in the NHL). They can be prouder of their penalty kill which is 5th best in the league at 87.1%.

Tampa Bay is producing more shot attempts than their opponents as they enter the night with a 51.87 CF%. They are also getting the better quality chances as they boast a 52.88 xGF%. Pretty solid 5v5 numbers.

The Captain, Steven Stamkos, is leading the way offensively with 11 goals and 24 points. Victor Hedman is back to doing Victor Hedman things as he has a team-high 15 assists. Andrei Vasilevskiy is 10-4-3 in his 17 starts with a .926 SV% and 2.15 GAA.

While it is possible Erik Cernak could return from injury tonight, the Lightning are still missing Nikita Kucherov, Brayden Point, and Mathieu Joseph. That’s a lot of offense on the shelf.

Tampa Bay Lightning Lines:

Forwards

Ondrej Palat — Steven Stamkos — Alex Barre-Boulet

Alex Killorn — Anthony Cirelli — Gabriel Fortier

Patrick Maroon — Pierre-Edouard Bellemare — Corey Perry

Taylor Raddysh — Ross Colton — Boris Katchouk

Defense

Victor Hedman — Jan Rutta

Ryan McDonagh — Erik Cernak

Mikhail Sergachev — Cal Foote

Goaltenders

Brian Elliott

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Updated after morning skate based on Tweet from Eddie Encina.

St Louis Blues Lines:

Forwards

Brayden Schenn - Ryan O’Reilly - Jordan Kyrou

Pavel Buchnevich - Robert Thomas - Vladimir Tarasenko

Brandon Saad - Oskar Sundqvist - Ivan Barbashev

Dakota Joshua - Logan Brown

Defense

Niko Mikkola - Colton Parayko

Torey Krug - Justin Faulk

Scott Perunovich - Robert Bortuzzo

Marco Scandella

Goaltenders

Jordan Binnington

Ville Husso

Lines updated per Chris Pinkert of nhl.com.

Looks like the Blues will roll 11/7 due to Tyler Bozak entering COVID protocol this morning.