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Stralman, Coburn expected to return for Lightning

Defensemen try to help Tampa Bay avenge 4-2 loss to Philadelphia on Monday

by Corey Long / Correspondent

FLYERS (31-23-11) at LIGHTNING (39-23-5)

TV: 7:30 p.m. ET; TVA Sports, CSN-PH, SUN, NHL.TV

TAMPA -- Tampa Bay Lightning defensemen Anton Stralman and Braydon Coburn are expected to return to the lineup against the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday Amalie Arena.

Stralman missed the 1-0 overtime loss to the Boston Bruins on Tuesday with an illness. Coburn missed the past two games with a lower-body injury.

"Every day has been better for me," Coburn said. "So that's a positive. It was a kind of a freak thing; I got tangled up with a guy real weird. It was unlucky."

This will be Coburn's first game against the Flyers since being traded to the Lightning on March 2, 2015. He missed the 4-2 loss Monday at Wells Fargo Center.

"That was a tough one to swallow," Coburn said. "It's one of those things, since the trade happened, you circle that date on the schedule that you get to go back. Anytime you're watching your team and you're not there it's hard but especially when it's against your old team for sure."

Tampa Bay is 0-1-1 after its franchise-record nine-game win streak. The Lightning are tied with the Florida Panthers for second place in the Atlantic Division -- one point behind the Boston Bruins with two games in hand.

Philadelphia finished their recent homestand 5-1-0. The Flyers are three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs out of the Eastern Conference.

Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said he will keep the same lineup he had Monday and said he expects similar effort and mentality from his team.

"I don't care what league you're in, this is the time of year that you want to be playing for something and our team is," Hakstol said. "That's the only thing that's on my mind. This is the first of six back-to-backs remaining on our schedule so we're not going to think too far ahead."

Lightning forward Brian Boyle said Tampa Bay played poorly against Philadelphia and can't afford a repeat of that game.

"This time of year you need to make sure you're firing on all cylinders," Boyle said. "We can't accept efforts like we had in Philly. There's really no excuse for that. We need to play well and get into really good habits going into the playoffs."

Steve Mason will make his 40th start of the season in goal for Philadelphia. Ben Bishop, who is 6-0-1 in his past seven games, starts for the Lightning.

Here are the projected lineups:


Brayden Schenn - Claude Giroux - Wayne Simmonds

Michael Raffl - Sean Couturier - Sam Gagner

Scott Laughton - Nick Cousins - Matt Read

Chris VandeVelde - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Ryan White

Andrew MacDonald - Shayne Gostisbehere

Nick Schultz - Mark Streit

Brandon Manning - Radko Gudas

Steve Mason

Michal Neuvirth

Injured: Jakub Voracek (lower body), Michael Del Zotto (wrist), Jordan Weal (upper body)

Scratched: R.J. Umberger, Evgeny Medvedev


Alex Killorn - Steven Stamkos - Ryan Callahan

Ondrej Palat - Tyler Johnson - Nikita Kucherov

Cedric Paquette - Valtteri Filppula - J.T. Brown

Brian Boyle - Vladislav Namestnikov - Erik Condra

Victor Hedman - Anton Stralman

Andrej Sustr - Jason Garrison

Nikita Nesterov - Braydon Coburn

Ben Bishop

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Injured: None

Scratched: Jonathan Marchessault, Matthew Carle

Status report: Slater Koekkoek was reassigned to Syracuse of the American Hockey League. "Unfortunately there is no room for him right now," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "But he's definitely playing himself in and that's good." ... Flyers GM Ron Hextall said Voracek will be examined by a doctor Saturday.

Who's hot: Bishop has allowed six goals in his past five starts and has a .959 save percentage. ... Gostisbehere scored twice against Tampa Bay on Monday.

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