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Nuts and Bolts: Lightning begin the trip in Buffalo

Tampa Bay opens a three-game trip on Saturday night vs. the Sabres in Buffalo

by Bryan Burns /

The Lightning and Sabres meet for the third time this season on Saturday night.

The two teams split the first two matchups with each squad winning on home ice. The Sabres won the first meeting 2-1 back in November but the Bolts responded with a 5-4 win in Tampa later that month. 

Lines from Thursday's game. Subject to change.

Ondrej Palat - Steven Stamkos - Alex Killorn
Tyler Johnson - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov
Adam Erne - Anthony Cirelli - Yanni Gourde
Danick Martel - Cedric Paquette - Mathieu Joseph

Victor Hedman - Dan Girardi
Ryan McDonagh - Erik Cernak
Braydon Coburn - Anton Stralman

Andrei Vasilevskiy
Louis Domingue

Saturday's Matchup
The Lightning and the Sabres are playing their third of four meetings this season (also: Feb. 21 vs. BUF) and the second of two at KeyBank Center...Tampa Bay earned a 5-4 victory at home -- a game that featured five lead changes -- the last time the two teams hooked up (Nov. 29), the Lightning ending the Sabres' 10-game win streak (which still ranks as the longest win streak in the NHL this season)...In that win, Cedric Paquette scored the game-winning goal at 14:19 of the third period while Alex Killorn (goal, assist), Nikita Kucherov (goal, assist) and Victor Hedman (2 assists) all recorded two-point nights...Buffalo defeated the Bolts 2-1 the last time the two teams played each other at KeyBank Center (Nov. 13), Anthony Cirelli netting the lone goal for the Lightning and Louis Domingue making 17-of-19 saves in the loss (the 19 shots allowed by the Lightning were the fewest they've allowed this season)...Tampa Bay is 8-2-1 in Buffalo since the start of the 2013-14 season and 10-3-1 in Buffalo since 2011-12...Tampa Bay is 17- 4-2 overall against Buffalo since the start of the 2013-14 season.

Saturday's Storylines
The Lightning are 8-1-1 over their last 10 road games...The Bolts have suffered just one regulation loss since Dec. 29, going 17-1-1 since...Tampa Bay continues to top the NHL standings and owns a 10-point lead over second-place Calgary...The Lightning are on pace for 130 points; there have been only four instances in NHL history of a team recording at least 125 points in a season, a feat last achieved by Detroit in 1995-96...The Bolts pace the NHL for wins (34), points (70), ROW (31), points percentage (.795), road wins (15, T-1st), road points (32), road goals (?), and road points percentage (.762)...The Bolts have lost consecutive games just once this season, that coming Nov. 10 vs. OTT (4-6 L) and Nov. 13 at BUF (1-2 L).

2018-19 Man Games Lost: 78
Ryan Callahan (Upper Body; Day-to-Day) 2 Games
J.T. Miller (Upper Body; Week-to-Week) 6 Games

Tampa Bay Sports Item of the Game
NHL All-Star Lightning Player Jerseys
adidas Parlay ADIZERO All-Star Lightning Player Jerseys, made from 100% marine plastic waste materials, are now available in store and online while supplies last.

The Road Ahead
Sunday, Jan. 13 at New York Islanders
Tuesday, Jan. 15 at Dallas Stars
Thursday, Jan. 17 vs. Toronto Maple Leafs

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