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Stars at Lightning preview

Tampa Bay's Kucherov one goal from 200 in NHL; Stars 4-1-1 in past six

by Corey Long / Independent Correspondent

STARS (19-12-4) at LIGHTNING (17-12-3)

7 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-SW. NHL.TV


The Game

The Tampa Bay Lightning seek their fourth win in five games when they host the Dallas Stars at Amalie Arena on Thursday.

The Lightning's three victories in that span have each been by one goal. Forward Nikita Kucherov, who was benched for most of the third period and all of overtime in a 4-3 win against the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday, is one goal shy of 200 in the NHL.

The Stars are 4-1-1 in their past six games following a four-game winless streak (0-3-1) and are 18-5-3 in their past 26 games after a 1-7-1 start this season.


Players to watch

Stars forward Alexander Radulov has seven points (one goal, six assists) in a five-game point streak.

Lightning center Brayden Point has scored a goal in three consecutive games. 


They said it

"This group is a structured defensively. Good goalies, good defense, [we] don't give up a lot. There are a lot of honest hockey players in here that play the game the right way. We're facing a dangerous team tonight and they are going to be hungry. Should be a good matchup." -- Stars forward Joe Pavelski

"[The Stars] can be hard in the [defensive] zone and it's hard to get inside on them. They check and you have to look after the puck when you play these guys because they are not going to give you a lot of looks." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper


Stars projected lineup

Jamie Benn -- Tyler Seguin -- Alexander Radulov

Mattias Janmark -- Roope Hintz -- Joe Pavelski

Andrew Cogliano -- Radek Faksa -- Blake Comeau

Denis Gurianov -- Jason Dickinson -- Corey Perry

Esa Lindell -- John Klingberg

Jamie Oleksiak -- Miro Heiskanen

Andrej Sekera -- Roman Polak

Anton Khudobin

Ben Bishop

Scratched: Taylor Fedun, Justin Dowling

Injured: None


Lightning projected lineup

Ondrej Palat -- Brayden Point -- Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn -- Anthony Cirelli -- Steven Stamkos

Pat Maroon -- Cedric Paquette -- Yanni Gourde

Carter Verhaeghe -- Tyler Johnson -- Mitchell Stephens

Victor Hedman -- Jan Rutta

Ryan McDonagh -- Erik Cernak

Mikhail Sergachev -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Curtis McElhinney

Scratched: Luke Schenn

Injured: Braydon Coburn (lower body)


Status report

The Lightning assigned Mathieu Joseph to Syracuse of the American Hockey League on Thursday. The forward has seven points (four goals, three assists) in 31 games with Tampa Bay this season.


Stat pack

Pavelski will play in his 999th NHL game. … Benn has 13 points (six goals, seven assists) in 13 games against the Lightning. … Stamkos has eight points (six goals, two assists) in his past six games. … Kucherov has 17 points (five goals, 12 assists) in his past 13 games.

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