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At the Rink: Lightning at Avalanche

by Rick Sadowski

DENVER -- The Tampa Bay Lightning close out their four-game road trip through the Western Conference when they play the Colorado Avalanche at Pepsi Center on Sunday.

The Lightning (37-18-6) have gone 3-1-0 in the first four games of the trip. They defeated the Arizona Coyotes 4-2 on Saturday and are in second place in the Atlantic Division, one point behind the Montreal Canadiens.

The Avalanche (25-23-11) are 3-1-0 in their past four games and seven points behind the Calgary Flames, who have the second wild-card Stanley Cup Playoff position in the Western Conference.

The Lightning defeated the Avalanche 3-2 in a shootout on Jan. 17 after goalie Ben Bishop made 40 saves through overtime.

Tampa Bay and Colorado are trying to get their power plays on track. The Lightning scored two power-play goals against the Coyotes after going 1-for-18 in a seven-game stretch.

The Avalanche scored two power-play goals Friday in a 4-1 win against the Chicago Blackhawks after going 1-for-38 in 13 games.

Neither team had a morning skate.

Here are the projected lineups:


Alex Killorn - Steven Stamkos - Ryan Callahan

Ondrej Palat - Tyler Johnson - Nikita Kucherov

Cedric Paquette - Valtteri Filppula - Brett Connolly

Jonathan Drouin - Brian Boyle - J.T. Brown

Victor Hedman - Andrej Sustr

Mark Barberio - Anton Stralman

Jason Garrison - Nikita Nesterov

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Ben Bishop

Scratched: Brenden Morrow, Luke Witkowski

Injured: Matt Carle (abdominal surgery), Radko Gudas (knee)


Gabriel Landeskog - Ryan O'Reilly - Nathan MacKinnon

Maxime Talbot - Matt Duchene - Jarome Iginla

Alex Tanguay - John Mitchell - Dennis Everberg

Cody McLeod - Marc-Andre Cliche - Paul Carey

Jan Hejda - Zach Redmond

Nate Guenin - Tyson Barrie

Brad Stuart - Nick Holden

Semyon Varlamov

Reto Berra

Scratched: Daniel Briere, Stefan Elliott

Injured: Patrick Bordeleau (fractured kneecap), Erik Johnson (knee), Jamie McGinn (back surgery), Borna Rendulic (broken leg), Ryan Wilson (shoulder), Jesse Winchester (concussion)

Status report: Carle, who was injured Jan. 15 against the Edmonton Oilers, has resumed skating. He is on target to return between March 3-17 ... Varlamov will make his 16th consecutive start for the Avalanche.

Who's hot: Palat has three goals and three assists in a four-game points streak ... Stamkos has four goals and one assist in the past five games ... Landeskog has a goal in five consecutive games ... Barrie has three goals and one assist in the past three games.

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