Tampa Bay Lightning at Edmonton Oilers Preview and Game Day Thread
There will be some offensive talent on the ice tonight
Tampa Bay Lightning at Edmonton Oilers: GAME #44
Time: 9:00 pm Eastern Time
Location: Rogers Place
Broadcast/Streaming: ESPN, SNW
Opponent SBNation Site: Copper and Blue
DraftKings Line: Lightning -1.5 O/U 6.5
Congratulations to all of y’all that stayed up last night to watch Steven Stamkos achieve another milestone in his career as he put home career goal number 500. With that wait over the Lightning offense seemingly had a slight burden lifted off of their soldiers as they quickly struck for three more goals in the first period against the reeling Vancouver Canucks. The Captain ended up with a hat trick and the Lightning with a 5-2 victory.
Hopefully, they didn’t stay out too late celebrating the goal or their five-game winning streak as they are right back on the ice to take on the the equally hot Edmonton Oilers who have won their last four games. The Oilers are doing what they do, scoring goals, as they have potted 22 goals in those four wins. Yes, 13 of those came against the Anaheim Ducks and San Jose Sharks, but Edmonton also picked up solid wins against teams they’re chasing in the standings in the Seattle Kraken and Vegas Golden Knights.
Connor McDavid is leading the way with 12 points (6 goals, 6 assists) during an eight-game point streak. His running mate, Leon Draisaitl, has a four-game streak of his own where he’s put up 8 points (4 goals, 4 assists). They are boosted on the top line by the return of Evander Kane, who played in their last game, a 5-2 win over the Kraken. It was his first game action since suffering a deep laceration to his wrist the last time the Lightning played the Oilers back in November, a 3-2 win for Edmonton.
It’s not just McDavid and Draisaitl though. The Oilers have two other players with 20 or more goals (Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Zach Hyman) as they look to unload the pressure from their dynamic duo.
As for the Lightning, they’ve started their five-game road trip with three victories (meeting Jon Cooper’s desire to come back home with more points than games played). They’ve now scored 4 or more goals in 5 straight games (all wins) as the offense is clicking. Stamkos’ hat trick ran his point streak to 6 games, Brandon Hagel is riding a 5-game streak, while Brayden Point picked up his 13th point in his last 10 games (7 goals, 6 assists). Nikita Kucherov picked up another assist to bring his total on the season to 46 - which ties him McDavid for the league lead.
So, yeah, there is quite a bit of offense on the ice. While the Oilers are slightly more explosive offensively, the Lightning have the distinct advantage in net. Andrei Vasilevskiy has found his groove and will be back in net tonight as he looks to join Ken Dryden as the only netminders in NHL history to pick up their 250th win in less than 400 games played.
Since December 1st, Vasilevskiy has posted a 1.93 GAA, .931 SV%, and a 11.28 GSAx. Not too shabby. Over that same time frame the Oilers have split time between Jack Campbell (11 games) and Stuart Skinner (14 games) with both of them putting up okay numbers. Skinner is likely to start tonight and he has a .914 SV%, 3.00 GAA, and 6.21 GSAx. Campbell is sitting at a 2.61 GAA, .901 SV% and a -2.44 GSAx.
The loss of Ryan Murray and Oscar Klefbom, weakened an already suspect defensive unit for the Oilers. Without a superstar goaltender to bail them out they have allowed 150 goals on the season and their 3.26 GA/GP is 20th in the league. Only the fact that they score 3.67 GF/GP, third in the league, has allowed them to stay in the Pacific Division race.
If you manage to stay up tonight, expect to see some goals.
Tampa Bay Lightning vs Edmonton Oilers Comparison
|Game #44||Tampa Bay Lightning||Edmonton Oilers|
Tampa Bay Lightning Potential Lines
Brandon Hagel - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov
Steven Stamkos - Anthony Cirelli - Alex Killorn
Ross Colton - Nick Paul - Patrick Maroon
Vlad Namestnikov - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Corey Perry
Victor Hedman - Zach Bogosian
Ian Cole - Erik Cernak
Mikhail Sergachev - Cal Foote
Edmonton Oilers Potential Lines
Evander Kane - Connor McDavid - Leon Draisaitl
Klim Kostin - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Mattias Janmark
Warren Foegele - Devin Shore - Zach Hyman
Dylan Holloway - Ryan McLeod - Derek Ryan
Darnell Nurse - Cody Ceci
Brett Kulak - Tyson Barrie
Philip Broberg - Evan Bouchard