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Penguins-Lightning Preview @NHL
Penguins-Lightning Preview

GAME: Pittsburgh Penguins (7-10-6) at Tampa Bay Lightning (12-10-3).

TIME: Sunday, 5 p.m. EST.

Already struggling, the Pittsburgh Penguins may have to get by without rookie standout Sidney Crosby as they visit the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Crosby, who leads the Penguins with 12 goals and is tied for the team lead with 28 points, could miss Sunday's game at Tampa Bay with a bruised left foot.

The rookie was hit in the foot by a shot during the third period of the Penguins' 6-3 loss Friday night to the Florida Panthers. He did not practice Saturday and the team has listed him as questionable.

Although he's been strong since the season started, Crosby is riding his best stretch thus far scoring a goal in five straight games.

Crosby said Saturday the foot was better, but still a little stiff.

"We'll see ... I think it depends on the swelling," Crosby said. "If it's swollen like this, we'll probably just wait. If it's still swollen, and because it's swollen, the left foot probably doesn't fit in a skate."

X-rays were taken, but no fractures were found.

Crosby, Palffy, and Erik Christensen had goals for the Penguins in Friday's loss to the Panthers.

The Lightning, meanwhile, are trying to rebound from their worst loss of the season, an 8-2 defeat Friday to the New Jersey Devils to open a six-game homestand.

The Devils scored on four of their first seven shots against Tampa Bay goalie Sean Burke to take a commanding lead just 13 minutes into the contest.

Fredrik Modin and Martin St. Louis scored for Tampa Bay, which saw its season-high four-game winning streak end.

"It always seems that the first game back from an extended trip throughout the league is a struggle and I could sense it in the pregame skate," Lightning coach John Tortorella said. "It certainly showed up in our game.

"I don't think it's the guys coming in and not wanting to work and being lazy. I'm not going to overanalyze it."

Lightning center Brad Richards had two assists, giving him eight assists and 11 points during a nine-game point streak

STANDINGS (through Nov. 26): Penguins - 20 points, 5th place, 15 PB, Atlantic Division. Lightning - 27 points, 2nd place, 4 PB, Southeast Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Penguins - Crosby, 12 goals; Palffy, 18 assists; Crosby and Palffy, 28 points; Brooks Orpik, 40 PIM. Lightning - Vaclav Prospal, 13 goals and 31 points; Richards, 19 assists; Pavel Kubina, 44 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through Nov. 26): Penguins - Power play: 17.3 percent (27 for 156), 16th in NHL. Penalty killing: 78.5 percent (117 for 149), 29th. Lightning - Power play: 12.8 percent (19 for 148), 27th. Penalty killing: 83.5 percent (107 for 128), 10th.

GOALTENDERS: Penguins - Sebastien Caron (5-3-3, 0 SO, 3.95 GAA); Jocelyn Thibault (1-6-2, 0, 4.42). Lightning - John Grahame (9-8-1, 1, 2.87); Sean Burke (3-1-2, 0, 2.77).

SEASON SERIES: Lightning, 1-0.

LAST MEETING: Oct. 15; Lightning, 3-1. At Pittsburgh, Lecavalier scored a goal and set up two others and the Lightning extended the Penguins' season-opening winless streak to a franchise record-tying six games.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Penguins - 4-5-3 on the road; Lightning - 5-5-1 at home.

Associated Press
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