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Lightning vs. Blue Jackets: Projected lines, storylines, injuries

Lightning host Blue Jackets and celebrate 2004 Stanley Cup team on Saturday night

by Bryan Burns / TampaBayLightning.com

The Lightning and the Blue Jackets are playing their second of three meetings this season and their only meeting at AMALIE Arena. The 2004 Lightning Stanley Cup Championship team will return as part of the team's 25th Anniversary celebration. The returning members will walk the blue carpet on Ford Thunder Alley at 5 p.m. and take part in a pre-game ceremony prior to puck drop. 

Lines from Friday's Practice. Subject to change.

Forwards

Vladislav Namestnikov - Steven Stamkos - Nikita Kucherov

Ondrej Palat - Brayden Point - Yanni Gourde

Chris Kunitz - Tyler Johnson - Ryan Callahan

Alex Killorn - Gabriel Dumont - JT Brown

Defense

Victor Hedman - Jake Dotchin

Mikhail Sergachev - Anton Stralman

Braydon Coburn - Dan Girardi

Andrej Sustr - Slater Koekkoek

Goalies 

Andrei Vasilevskiy expected to start 

SATURDAY'S MATCHUP
Tampa Bay traveled to Columbus 16 days ago and shut out the Blue Jackets 2-0 behind a 43-save effort from Andrei Vasilevskiy , the 43 saves tied for third most in a single game in the goalie's career and the most in a shutout effort...Mikhail Sergachev netted both Lightning goals in that victory for the first two goals of his NHL career to become one of just five Bolts all-time to score their first two goals in the same game, joining Steven Stamkos (10/30/08 at BUF), Mark Barberio (1/19/14 at CAR), Cedric Paquette (11/6/14 vs. CGY) and Slater Koekkoek (10/12/17 vs. PIT)...The win this season in Columbus ended a three-game losing
skid for the Bolts against the Blue Jackets...Tampa Bay swept the three-game season series from Columbus in 2015-16, outscoring the Blue Jackets 11-3, before Columbus swept the three-game season series from the Lightning in 2016-17, outscoing the Bolts 13- 5...Tampa Bay and Columbus are playing for the 27th time, the Lightning owning a 15-10-0 record with one tie all-time vs. the Blue Jackets.

 

SATURDAY'S STORYLINES
Tampa Bay continues to pace the NHL for points (22) and is T-1st with St. Louis and Los Angeles for wins (10)...Since Feb. 4, 2017, the Lightning are 30-8-6 and own the most points (66) in the NHL over that period and second-most wins (first: STL - 31)...The Bolts pace the League for goals with 54 (second: TOR - 53)...Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov will skate in his 300th career game provided he's in the lineup.
 

INJURIES
2017-18 Regular Season Man Games Lost: 8
Current injuries:
Cedric Paquette - Upper body (DAY-TO-DAY) 7 Games

TRANSACTIONS
Oct. 9 -- Assigned F Michael Bournival to AHL Syracuse

ANDREI THE GIANT
T
ampa Bay goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 33-of-35 shots Nov. 2 vs. NYR but saw his nine-game win streak come to an end n the OT loss...Vasilevskiy became the first goalie in franchise history to earn wins in nine-straight appearances, eclipsing the mark set by Nikolai Khabibulin from Feb. 23 to March 6, 2004 (8-0-0)...Vasilevskiy matched a Lightning goaltending record for consecutive wins in decisions set previously by John Grahame from Nov. 14 to Dec. 10, 2005...Despite the OT loss on Thursday, Vasilevskiy continues to pace the NHL for wins (10)...Vasilevskiy ranks 10th in the League for save percentage (.928)...Vasilevskiy ranks second in the NHL
for shots against (403) and saves (374)...Dating back to Feb. 27, 2017, Vasilevskiy is 22-5-3 over his last 30 starts, pacing all NHL goalies for wins over that period (second: Jake Allen - 18).

 

HED OF THE CLASS
Tampa Bay defenseman Victor Hedman tallied an assist Nov. 2 vs. NYR, giving him assists in five of his last six games...Hedman has recorded six assists over his last six games...With his assist on Thursday, Hedman (244 career assists) tied Vinny Prospal for fifth place on the Lightning's all-time assists list and can move into sole possession of fifth with one more helper...Hedman leads all Bolts blueliners for assists and ranks T-4th among all Bolts skaters...Hedman ranks T-11th among League defensemen for assists.
 

 

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