Pittsburgh Penguins at Tampa Bay Lightning Preview and Game Day Thread

Both teams have made some tweaks to the roster since last they met

Pittsburgh Penguins at Tampa Bay Lightning: GAME #61

Time: 7:00 pm Eastern Time

Location: Amalie Arena

Broadcast/Streaming: BSSUN, ATTSN-PT, TVAS, HULU, ESPN+

Opponent SBNation Site: [Team] at [Team]: GAME#

Time: #:## pm Eastern Time

Location: PLACE

Broadcast/Streaming: CHANNELS

Opponent SBNation Site: Pensburgh

DraftKings Line: Lightning -1.5 O/U 6.5


When these two teams met up a few days ago in Pittsburgh, things didn’t go so well for the Tampa Bay Lightning. A six-goal outburst in the second period by the Penguins not only erased a one-goal Lightning lead, but turned the game into a comical blowout that we have rarely seen over the last few seasons. Since then the Lightning have continued their lost ways with an unfocused 4-1 loss to the Florida Panthers while the Penguins beat a team that seemingly has been racking up more trades than goals scored over the last week in the Nashville Predators.

Speaking of trades, both the Lightning and the Penguins have made some changes to their roster since the last meeting with the Bolts shipping out Cal Foote and Vlad Namestnikov while bringing in Tanner Jeannot and Mikey Eyssimont. Jeannott will be in on the third line while Eyssimont will likely be a scratch. Tampa Bay also added some defensive depth as they recalled Darren Raddysh from Syracuse earlier today.

On the Penguins side, they dished Teddy Blueger off to Las Vegas and waived Brock McGinn and Mark Friedman. Tough week for their fathers as they were moved off of the roster during the Pen’s annual Dad’s trip.  Pittsburgh used their new found cap space to acquire Mikael Granlund from the Predators to bolster their offensive depth.

No matter who is on the ice tonight, the Lightning just need to execute their game plan better than they have been over the last three weeks or so. Looking back at their schedule when was the last complete game they played against a quality opponent? Sure they beat Anaheim 6-1, but the Ducks are struggling a bit this season. Probably the 4-3 shootout win against Colorado all the way back on February 14th was the last time we felt really good about how they were playing. The last three weeks has featured hockey, sure, but it wasn’t good hockey.

The Bolts have gone through periods of malaise like this in the past and have been able to turn it around in time for the playoffs, which, with the way the March schedule is packed, will be here before we know it. They’re going to have to start figuring it out soon and the short-term schedule isn’t friendly as they Buffalo and Carolina on a back-to-back this weekend.

With limited practice time between games to work on what ails them, they will have to adjust on the fly. Hopefully we see improvement tonight. There were signs of life in the third period against the Panthers in the last meeting, now they just need to carry that over and get off to a strong start against a team that put a touchdown up against them the last time out.  One note of hope to build around. The Lightning have won their last seven games at Amalie Arena following a home loss. Also, Andrei Vasilevskiy has only lost back-to-back starts twice this season and has allowed a total of one goal coming off of his last three losses.

Comparison chart:

Penguins at Lightning Comparison

Game #61Tampa Bay LightningPittsburgh Penguins
Overall Record37-19-430-21-9
Home Record22-5-316-9-4
Road Record15-14-114-12-5
Goals For211194
Goals Against178190

Tampa Bay Lightning Potential Lines

Forward Lines

Brandon Hagel - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov

Steven Stamkos - Anthony Cirelli - Alex Killorn

Tanner Jeannot - Nick Paul - Ross Colton

Pat Maroon - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Corey Perry

Defense Pairings

Victor Hedman - Zach Bogosian

Mikhail Sergachev - Nick Perbix

Ian Cole - Erik Cernak


Andrei Vasilevskiy

Brian Elliott

Lines based on practice yesterday. Perry was out due to personal reasons, but will likely play tonight. If not, they may go 11/7.

Pittsburgh Penguins Potential Lines

Forward Lines

Jake Guentzel - Sidney Crosby - Rickard Rakell

Jason Zucker - Evgeni Malkin - Bryan Rust

Mikael Granlund - Jeff Carter - Danton Heinen

Drew O’Connor - Ryan Poehling - Josh Archibald

Defense Pairings

Brian Dumoulin / Kris Letang

Marcus Pettersson / Jeff Petry

P.O. Joseph / Jan Rutta


Tristan Jarry

Casey DeSmith

Note, lines are the best guess from our friends at Pensburgh following the team’s recent roster moves. We will update if the Pens have a full morning skate.