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game preview

Callahan likely back for Game 3; Bishop still out

Tampa Bay forward missed Game 2 with flu, could return against Pittsburgh

by Corey Long / Correspondent


Eastern Conference Final

Best-of-7 series tied 1-1

TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports

TAMPA -- Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ryan Callahan participated in the morning skate and likely will return to the starting lineup Wednesday for Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena on Wednesda

"It's unlucky, obviously, to miss a playoff game and to miss it in that fashion," Callahan said. "At the same time it's out of your control."

Callahan's return will give the Lightning a boost on both ends of the ice. Tampa Bay has to figure out a way to slow Pittsburgh down but also need to be more productive with their opportunities on offense.

"We're not generating enough [offense], "Callahan said. "We're not generating more shots on net. That second opportunity is what we're lacking right now. When we take shots it's one and two. They are getting one, two shots each time down."

Lightning coach Jon Cooper said goalie Ben Bishop and forward Steven Stamkos will not play in Game 3. Bishop skated Wednesday but did not participate in the morning skate and Stamkos had a planned day off.

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan will use the same lineup he used in Game 2 but said he hope he doesn't have to mix and match lines as much like he did Monday.

"We'd like to settle into some stability," Sullivan said. "And we'll do that. We have a game plan going into [Wednesday] and we'll see how it goes and we'll make our decisions accordingly."

Matt Murray be in goal for the Penguins and Andrei Vasilevskiy will make his third career start in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the Lightning.

Here are the projected lines:


Conor Sheary - Sidney Crosby - Patric Hornqvist

Chris Kunitz - Evgeni Malkin - Bryan Rust

Carl Hagelin - Nick Bonino - Phil Kessel

Tom Kuhnhackl - Matt Cullen - Eric Fehr

Brian Dumoulin - Kris Letang

Trevor Daley - Ben Lovejoy

Ian Cole - Justin Schultz

Matt Murray

Marc-Andre Fleury

Injured: Kevin Porter (ankle surgery), Scott Wilson (foot surgery)

Scratched: Jeff Zatkoff, Olli Maatta, Beau Bennett, Derrick Pouliot, Oskar Sundqvist


Ondrej Palat - Valtteri Filppula - Jonathan Drouin

Alex Killorn - Tyler Johnson - Nikita Kucherov

Cedric Paquette - Brian Boyle - Ryan Callahan

Vladislav Namestnikov - J.T. Brown

Victor Hedman - Anton Stralman

Jason Garrison - Andrej Sustr

Matthew Carle - Braydon Coburn

Slater Koekkoek

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Kristers Gudlevskis

Injured: Steven Stamkos (blood clot), Ben Bishop (lower body)

Scratched: Jonathan Marchessault, Nikita Nesterov, Erik Condra

Status Report: Sheary, who was benched in the third period of Game 2, doesn't expect any lingering effects. "It was just one of those nights," he said. "Things just weren't going my way. It happens.". ... Cooper was non-committal on whether the Lightning would use seven defensemen for the third consecutive game in the series. ... Stralman said he feels no issues with his leg after playing in Game 2, "It was a big test, and it was good. I felt good," he said.

Who's Hot: Kessel scored a goal in Game 2 and has six points in the past four games (three goals, three assists). ... Stralman scored a goal in Game 2 and has five goals against the Penguins this season.

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