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game preview

Blackhawks at Lightning preview

Chicago forward Anisimov looks to extend goal-scoring streak; Tampa Bay aims for sixth win in seven games

by Corey Long / Correspondent

BLACKHAWKS (10-8-2) at LIGHTNING (15-3-2)



The Game

The Tampa Bay Lightning will conclude a three-game homestand against the Chicago Blackhawks at Amalie Arena on Wednesday. 

The Lightning's five-game winning streak ended with a 5-3 loss to the New York Islanders on Saturday, but they're 10-2-1 in their past 13. Their 32 points are second behind the St. Louis Blues (33) for most in the NHL.

Lightning captain Steven Stamkos leads the League with 35 points (10 goals, 25 assists), two ahead of teammate Nikita Kucherov (17 goals, 16 assists). Stamkos has 14 points (six goals, eight assists) in his past 14 games and points in 17 of 20 games this season.

The Blackhawks have won three of their past four and two straight on the road, including a 2-1 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.


Players to watch

Forward Artem Anisimov has goals in three straight games (5-0-5) and leads the Blackhawks with 10.

Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy leads the League with 14 wins. He's held opponents to two goals or fewer in 10 of his past 13 starts (11-1-1, 1.91 goals-against average, .939 save percentage).


They said it

"They came out pretty hot with Stamkos, Kucherov and [Vladislav] Namestnikov, so we need to keep an eye on that line and control the puck so we can generate opportunities." -- Blackhawks forward Richard Panik

"When things are going well, sometimes you forget how hard you worked to have that streak or play that well. We saw the video of last game and it definitely wasn't the standard that we had set during the previous five in that win streak." -- Lightning center Steven Stamkos


Blackhawks projected lineup

Brandon Saad -- Jonathan Toews -- Richard Panik

Nick Schmaltz -- Artem Anisimov -- Patrick Kane

Patrick Sharp -- Ryan Hartman -- Alex DeBrincat

Lance Bouma -- Tommy Wingels -- John Hayden

Duncan Keith -- Cody Franson

Connor Murphy -- Brent Seabrook

Gustav Forsling -- Jan Rutta

Corey Crawford

Anton Forsberg

Scratched: Michal Kempny, Jordan Oesterle, Tanner Kero

Injured: Michal Rozsival (concussion), Jordin Tootoo (upper body)


Lightning projected lineup

Vladislav Namestnikov -- Steven Stamkos -- Nikita Kucherov

Ondrej Palat -- Brayden Point -- Yanni Gourde

Alex Killorn - Tyler Johnson -- Ryan Callahan

Chris Kunitz - Cedric Paquette -- J.T. Brown

Victor Hedman -- Dan Girardi

Mikhail Sergachev -- Anton Stralman

Braydon Coburn -- Andrej Sustr

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Peter Budaj

Scratched: Slater Koekkoek

Injured: Jake Dotchin (undisclosed)


Status report

Paquette said he's ready to go but will have to go through warmups first. ... The Lightning placed forward Gabriel Dumont on waivers and he was claimed by the Ottawa Senators. ... Kempny left the morning skate early with an illness.


Stat pack

Kane has 18 points (six goals, 12 assists) in 13 games against the Lightning. ... Tampa Bay has scored five or more goals nine times this season. … Gourde has nine points (five goals, four assists) in his past eight games.

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