The Lightning look to carry the momentum gained from their win on Wednesday night with another as they face the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The Lightning (9-7-2) is fresh off a 4-2 win over the Islanders last night that sent the Isles to their 11th straight defeat and snapped their five game road losing streak in the process.
The Flyers though will be attempting to extend their winning at home to eight and as well rebound from their first regulation loss in ten games. The Flyers (12-5-2) went 10 games (9-0-1) before losing on Tuesday to the Montreal Canadiens 3-0 in Montreal.
The Flyers fired 41 shots at Canadiens goaltender Carey Pricebut could not get anything past him in a 3-0 loss, which snapped the team’s 10-game unbeaten streak. Michael Cammalleri,Tomas Plekanecand Brian Gionta scored the goals for Montreal. Sergei Bobrovsky made 25 saves in absorbing the loss.
This is the second of four meetings on the year as the Bolts were 3-2 winners in their last meeting on October 14th that saw Dan Ellis pick up the win in his Lightning debut. Ellis gets the nod again for the Bolts in tonight’s game, marking the first time that Coach Guy Boucher has elected to use the same goaltender on back-to-back nights. It’s also Ellis’ third straight start.
The Bolts have gone 8-3-1 in Philadelphia since 2003-04 but do face an uphill battle against a very strong and aggressive team. The Flyers are 8-3-0 at home this season and during their and has outscored opponents 34-12 during their current winning streak. The Flyers last loss at home came on October 21st against the Anaheim Ducks.
Sergei Bobrovsky will be making his 12th consecutive start for the Flyers. The 22-year-old rookie goalie is 9-1-1 with a 1.82 GAA in his last 11 games after making 25 saves in the Flyers loss on Tuesday. On the season he’s tied for second in the league in wins (11) while ranking among the leaders with a 2.07 GAA and a .932 save percentage. This is his first start against the Lightning. Brian Boucher has not started (or played) a game since losing 2-1 in Columbus on Oct. 25.
Bobrovsky, called “Bob” will get his first opportunity at Steven Stamkos. Stamkos’ season hasn’t cooled down and continues his torrid pace totaling six goals and four assets during a six-game point streak. Against the Islanders last night, Stamkos scored his team and NHL leading 16th goal, to remain the top gun in the NHL with 30 points (16-14=30).
The injury bug is flourishing in Tampa Bay as the Bolts will be without Matt Smaby and Victor Hedman. Smaby tweaked his ankle in practice and Hedman sustained a shoulder injury after getting hit by former Bolt Zenon Konopka. Hedman missed the first six minutes of the second period against the Islanders, but returned for the remainder of the game.
The Bolts will also be without Mattias Ritola for tonight’s game and Saturday’s against Buffalo as he was suspended today by the NHL for his hit on Matt Moulson.
To help reinforce the lineup, the Lightning today recalled defenseman Matt Roy and forward James Wright from Norfolk. Both are expected to be in uniform for tonight’s game.
Lightning Nutz and Boltz
Martin St. Louis had 3 points in Wednesday’s win over the Islanders and now has points in six straight games (3-6-9)
Steven Stamkos had 2 points in the win and is also on a six-game point streak (6-4-10). He leads the NHL with 16 goals, 8 PPGs and 30 points. Stamkos has either led the league or shared the league lead in scoring, with tonight marking the 28th consecutive day he has done so.
Tampa Bay has gone 3-1-1 against the Atlantic Division this year
Entering play 11/18, Tampa Bay had the NHL’s 6th-best PP% with 23.1 and Steven Stamkos ranked 1st in the NHL with 8 PPGs and15 PPPs. Martin St. Louis tied for 2nd in the NHL in PPPs with 12 and led the NHL with 11 PPAs.
The Flyers have had at least 41 shots in each of their last three games (129 in total). They are 3-2 in games where they have at least 40 shots
Defensive partners Sean O’Donnell and former Bolt Andrej Meszaros are +12 and +11, respectively. O’Donnell is tied for fourth in the league and first overall among defensemen, while Meszaros is tied for seventh overall and second among defensemen
Mike Richards has 17 points (8-9-17) in his last 13 games and six points (5-1-6) in his last four games. Claude Giroux has seven points in his last four games (3-4-7); Andreas Nodl has five points in his last six games (2-3-5); Chris Pronger has three points in his last four games (0-3-3); and Kimmo Timonen has five points in his last five games (0-5-5)
Giroux is tied for 11th in the NHL in points (21) and is tied for 6th in goals (10)
Lightning: Matt Smaby (Ankle; day-to-day), Victor Hedman (Shoulder; day-to-day), (Simon Gagne (Neck; Injured Reserve) and Vincent Lecavalier (Hand; Injured Reserve)
Flyers: Michael Leighton (Back; IR), Dan Carcillo (MCL; Out indefinitely), Matt Walker (Hip; IR) and Ian Laperriere (Post-concussion syndrome; IR)
Lightning Upcoming Games
11/20/2010 @ Buffalo Sabres – 7:30 PM SUN (HD)
11/22/2010 vs. Boston Bruins – 7:00 PM SUN (HD)
11/24/2010 vs. New York Rangers – 7:30 PM SUN (HD)
11/26/2010 @ Washington Capitals – 5:00 PM SUN (HD)
11/27/2010 vs. Florida Panthers – 7:30 PM SUN (HD)
From now until January 3rd, fans will have the opportunity to cast their votes to pick part of the 2011 NHL All-Star teams via on-line. Steven Stamkos, Martin St. Louis and Vincent Lecavalier are on the NHL All-Star fan ballot. Click here to send Stammer, Marty and Vinny to the All-Star Game.
For more info: Tampa Bay Lightning, Philadelphia Flyers, 2010 NHL All-Star Game
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