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Lightning vs. Penguins: Projected lines, injuries, storylines

The Lightning return home from a three-game roadtrip to take on the Pittsburgh Penguins

by Bryan Burns / TampaBayLightning.com

The Lightning and the Penguins are playing their second of three meetings during the regular season and second of two meetings at AMALIE Arena. The Lightning beat the Penguins 5-4 in their first meeting at AMALIE Arena. 

Lines from Thursday's Game. Subject to change. 

Forwards

Vladislav Namestnikov - Steven Stamkos - Nikita Kucherov

Ondrej Palat - Brayden Point - Yanni Gourde

Chris Kunitz -  Gabriel Dumont- Ryan Callahan 

Alex Killorn - Tyler Johnson

Defense 

Victor Hedman - Jake Dotchin

Mikhail Sergachev - Anton Stralman

Braydon Coburn - Dan Girardi 

Andrej Sustr

Goalie

Andrei Vasilevskiy expected to start 

SATURDAY'S MATCHUP
The Lightning and the Penguins are playing their second of three meetings during the regular season and second of two meetings at AMALIE Arena...The Bolts bested the Pens 5-4 nine days earlier at AMALIE Arena (Oct. 12), Slater Koekkoek scoring a pair of goals,including the game-winner at 17:55 of the second period, for his first two goals in the NHL...Also from that game, Alex Killorn tallied four assists, tied for third most in a single game in Lightning history, to establish single game career highs for points and assists...Tampa Bay's victory ended a three-game regular season losing skid to the Penguins...The Lightning have won four of their past five regular
season meetings at home against Pittsburgh...
Steven Stamkos is averaging a point a game against Pittsburgh with 10 goals and 18 assists in 28 regular season games and has scored a goal in two-straight games vs. the Pens and notched points in four straight (2-4--6)...Nikita Kucherov is averaging over a point a game vs. the Pens with four goals and eight assists in 11 regular season contests and has scored a goal in each of his last two meetings with the Pens.

SATURDAY'S STORYLINES
The Lightning have collected points in six-straight games, their longest point streak since going 5-0-1 from 3/23-4/2/17 (last time Boltswent on a seven-game point streak was 2/4-21, 2017 after going 5-0-2)...With 13 points through eight games, Tampa Bay is off to its second-best start to a season all-time and best since the Stanley Cup-winning 2003-04 squad started with 15 points in eight games (Lightning record for points through nine games is 15, also set in 2003-04)...The Lightning are the first NHL team to reach 13 points in 2017-18...The Bolts are 4-0-0 at AMALIE Arena to start 2017-18 for their longest home winning streak since winning nine in a row at home 1/2-2/12, 2016...Tampa Bay can match the franchise record for consecutive home victories to start a season (5) set previously in 2012-13, 2007-08 and 2002-03 with a win tonight...The Lightning are one of four teams undefeated at home in 2017-18 (NSH - 3-0-0, FLA - 2-0-0, STL - 2-0-0).  

INJURIES
2017-18 Regular Season Man Games Lost: 2
Current injuries: Cedric Paquette - upper-body injury - 1 game 

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

WHAT'S MY LINE? 
Tampa Bay's top line of Vladislav Namestnikov, Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov accounted for four of the Bolts' six points Oct. 19 at CBJ...For the season, the trio has accounted for 35 of Tampa Bay's 80 total points...All three players are averaging a point a game or more for the season (Namestnikov 3-5--8, Stamkos 2-11--13 and Kucherov 8-6--14)...All three rank among the top 25 in the NHL for scoring...Kucherov and Stamkos extended their season-opening point streak to eight games on Thursday, becoming the third pair of NHL teammates to begin a season with simultaneous eight-game point streaks per the Elias Sports Bureau, joining Doug Weight (4-9--13 in 9 GP) and Pavol Demitra (7-5--12 in 9 GP) in 2001-02 w/ STL and Radek Bonk (4-8--12 in 9 GP) and Marian Hossa (5-7--12 in 8 GP) in 2003-04 w/ OTT...Kucherov and Stamkos own the longest point streak in the NHL this season, and each
sits three games shy of tying the Lightning franchise record for longest point streak to start a season

 

ALL HAIL MIK 
Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev scored his first two career NHL goals Oct. 19 at CBJ, joining Steven Stamkos (2008-09), Mark Barberio (2013-14), Cedric Paquette (2014-15) and Slater Koekkoek (2017-18) as the only Bolts to record their first two NHL goals in the same game...Sergachev is the third youngest Russian-born defenseman at the time of his first career goal (19 years, 116 days)...Sergachev ranks T-11th in the NHL for defensemen scoring (2-4--6) and second among league rookie defensemen...Sergachev ranks T-4th among league rookies for scoring...Sergachev has recorded points (2-2--4) in back-to-back games for the first time in his career and has recorded points (2-3--5) in three of his last four games. 
 

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