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Lightning vs. Capitals: Projected lines, storylines, injuries

The Bolts face the Caps in a winner-take-all Game 7

by Bryan Burns / TampaBayLightning.com

A birth in the Stanley Cup Final is on the line as the Lightning host the Capitals in Game 7 at AMALIE Arena on Wednesday night.

Tampa Bay had a chance to wrap up the series on Monday but were shutout 3-0 by the Capitals in Washington in Game 6. 

Lines from Wednesday's morning skate. Subject to change.

Forwards
Alex Killorn - Steven Stamkos - Nikita Kucherov

Ondrej Palat - Brayden Point - Tyler Johnson

Yanni Gourde - Anthony Cirelli - J.T. Miller

Chris Kunitz - Cedric Paquette - Ryan Callahan

Defensemen
Victor Hedman - Dan Girardi

Ryan McDonagh - Anton Stralman

Braydon Coburn - Mikhail Sergachev

Goaltenders
Andrei Vasilevskiy expected to start

Wednesday's Matchup
Tampa Bay and Washington will face off in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final with the winner moving on to the Stanley Cup Final to play the Vegas Golden Knights...The Lightning are searching for their third Stanley Cup Final appearance in franchise history (also: 2004 and 2015)...Tampa Bay is playing in its fifth all-time Eastern Conference Final Game 7 (the Lightning have never played an Eastern Conference Final series that didn't go to seven games) ...The Bolts are playing just their second Eastern Conference Final Game 7 at home (they won their previous ECF Game 7 at home, knocking off Philadelphia 2-1 in the 2004 playoffs en route to winning the franchise's only Stanley Cup to date)...The Lightning are playing their third ECF Game 7 in the last four seasons...Four Tampa Bay players have scored a game-winning goal in a Game 7: Braydon Coburn (2015 ECQF vs. DET), Dan Girardi (2012 ECQF vs OTT while with NYR), Alex Killorn (2015 ECF at NYR) and Chris Kunitz (2017 ECF vs. OTT in 2OT while with PIT)...Six Tampa Bay players have at least five career Game 7 wins, and all six have recorded Game 7 wins over the Capitals while with other teams: Anton Stralman (7-1), Ryan McDonagh (6-1), Dan Girardi (6-2), Chris Kunitz (6-3), Braydon Coburn (5-2) and Ryan Callahan (5-2)...This marks the 33rd time in NHL history that a Game 7 will be required to determine a Stanley Cup finalist, and home teams own a 21-11 edge in the previous 32 such contests ...The Bolts have held Washington to two or fewer goals in three of the six games of the ECF and have held opponents to two or fewer goals in 44 games this season (reg. season and postseason), tied with Boston for most in the Eastern Conference...The Caps have outshot the Lightning in every game of the Conference Final series.

Wednesday's Storylines
Tampa Bay is 5-2 all-time in Game 7s...The Lightning have never lost a Game 7 at home, going 3-0...The Bolts are 2-1 in Game 7s under head coach Jon Cooper...Tampa Bay is 2-2 in Eastern Conference Final Game 7s, defeating Philadelphia in 2004 and the New York Rangers in 2015 and losing to Boston in 2011 and Pittsburgh in 2016...The Lightning are 14-8 all-time with a chance to clinch a series and 10-3 with a chance to clinch a series at home...The Bolts own an all-time playoff record of 73-59, including a 36-31 record at home and 35-29 record at AMALIE Arena ....Tampa Bay is 36-27 in the postseason under Jon Cooper...The Lightning are 14-8 all-time in playoff series and 10-2 in playoff series when holding home-ice advantage (the Bolts' last playoff series loss when holding home-ice advantage was the 2015 Stanley Cup Final vs. Chicago)...The Lightning enter Game 7 with 1,447 games of playoff experience on the roster...Chris Kunitz has played in more games (177) than any NHL player remaining in the 2018 playoffs and is looking for his thirdstraight Stanley Cup and fifth overall...Kunitz is the only current member of the Lightning to win a Stanley Cup...Following Game 6, Kunitz pulled into a tie with Craig Ludwig and Al MacInnis for 37th place in the NHL for all-time playoff games...The Lightning rank second in the NHL for playoff wins (36) since the start of the 2015 playoffs behind only Pittsburgh (39)...The Bolts set franchise records for wins (54), road wins (25), points (113), road points (53), goals (290), home goals (145) and road goals (145) in 2017-18.

Injuries
2017-18 Regular Season Man Games Lost: 132
2018 Playoff Man Games Lost: 18
Current injuries
Adam Erne - Lower body (out indefinitely; injured March 26) - 22 games (16 playoff games)

In the Nik of Time
Right winger Nikita Kucherov leads Tampa Bay for scoring (7-10--17) this postseason and is tied for the Lightning lead for goals with Brayden Point and Steven Stamkos and the Bolts lead for assists with Victor Hedman...Kucherov ranks tied for ninth in the NHL for scoring this postseason and tied for seventh for goals...Kucherov has recorded points in four of the six Eastern Conference Final games so far...Kucherov has 117 points combined in the regular season and postseason, the most this season in the NHL and two points from Martin St. Louis' franchise record of 119 points set in 2010-11...Since the start of the 2015 postseason, Kucherov ranks second in the NHL playoffs for scoring (58 pts.) behind only PIT's Sidney Crosby (71 pts.) and ranks first for goals.

On Point
Lightning center Brayden Point has recorded points in three of the six Eastern Conference Final games so far and is tied with Steven Stamkos for the Bolts scoring lead during the ECF (3-3--6)...Point has scored a goal in three of his last five games, five of his last eight games and six of his last 10 games...Since the start of the Second Round, Point leads the Lightning for scoring (6-7--13)...Point ranks tied for second on the Lightning for scoring this postseason and tied for first for goals.

Stammer Time
Bolts captain Steven Stamkos has recorded points in four of the six Eastern Conference Final games so far and is tied with Brayden Point for the Tampa Bay scoring lead during the ECF (4-2--6)...Stamkos has matched his career best for goals in a playoff season (7) set previously during the 2015 playoffs...Six of Stamkos' seven goals have come on the power play, and prior to these playoffs, Stamkos had never scored more than three power-play goals in a playoff season (2011)...Stamkos leads the NHL for power-play goals this postseason.

Stamkos paces the NHL for power-play scoring this postseason.

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