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Tampa Bay seeks 50th win; Crawford coaches first game with Ottawa

by Corey Long / Correspondent

SENATORS (22-37-5) at LIGHTNING (49-12-4)



The Game

The Tampa Bay Lightning can tie the NHL record for fewest games to 50 wins in a season when they play the Ottawa Senators at Amalie Arena on Saturday.

The Lightning, who are 12-1-2 in their past 15 games and have the best record in the League, will try to reach 50 wins in their 66th game, which would equal the Detroit Red Wings in 1995-96.

Ottawa will be playing its first game under interim head coach Marc Crawford, who replaced the fired Guy Boucher on Friday. Crawford has a 549-421-78 record with 103 ties in 15 seasons with the Quebec Nordiques, Colorado Avalanche, Vancouver Canucks, Los Angeles Kings and Dallas Stars. He won the Stanley Cup in 1996 with the Avalanche. 

The Senators are on a six-game losing streak and are 3-13-0 in their past 16 games. 


Players to Watch

Lightning captain Steven Stamkos has 16 points (five goals, 11 assists) in the past 11 games.

Senators center Chris Tierney has scored one goal in the past 19 games. 


They said it

"It's more about us right now than it is about the opponent. We're very cognizant of the fact that we're playing a great team. We know we've got to do the right things in the play away from the puck because if you have any hesitation this team can hurt you in a lot of different ways." -- Senators interim coach Marc Crawford

"They've got a lot of young guys so they're going to be hungry to prove that they can play at this level. There are some teams that are looking to build toward next season and those are dangerous teams. Anytime you play your first couple games with a new coach you try to prove to him to you want to be on the team." -- Lightning captain Steven Stamkos

Senators projected lineup

Brady Tkachuk -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Colin White

Zack Smith -- Oscar Lindberg -- Magnus Paajarvi

Anthony DuClair -- Chris Tierney -- Bobby Ryan

Rudolfs Balcers -- Brian Gibbons -- Mikkel Boedker

Thomas Chabot -- Dylan DeMelo

Ben Harpur -- Cody Ceci

Mark Borowiecki -- Christian Jaros

Craig Anderson

Anders Nilsson

Injured: none

Scratched: Christian Wolanin


Lightning projected lineup

Ondrej Palat -- Steven Stamkos -- Yanni Gourde

Tyler Johnson -- Brayden Point -- Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn -- Anthony Cirelli -- J.T. Miller

Adam Erne -- Cedric Paquette -- Mathieu Joseph

Victor Hedman -- Dan Girardi 

Ryan McDonagh -- Erik Cernak

Braydon Coburn -- Mikhail Sergachev

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Louis Domingue

Injured: none

Scratched: Ryan Callahan, Danick Martel, Anton Stralman

Status Report

Crawford save he'll determine the healthy scratch before warmups. ...The Senators will go with a 12-6 lineup for the rest of the season unless injuries dictate otherwise.

Stat Pack

Kucherov has 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in the past 10 games. …Ryan has three points (goal, two assists) in the past 11 games. …Vasilevskiy is 9-0-2 with a .950 save percentage and three shutouts in his past 11 starts. 

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