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Lightning at Blue Jackets preview

Stamkos out for Tampa Bay; Atkinson, Jones will not play for Columbus

by Craig Merz / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

LIGHTNING (35-15-5) at BLUE JACKETS (30-17-9)

7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV

 

The Game

Steven Stamkos has an undisclosed injury and will not play when the Tampa Bay Lightning visit the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena on Monday. It's the first time the Lightning are in Columbus since the Blue Jackets swept their Eastern Conference First Round of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Stamkos, who was injured in a 3-1 win against the New York Islanders on Saturday, could return Tuesday against the Pittsburgh Penguins, coach Jon Cooper said.

The Blue Jackets will be without defenseman Seth Jones and forward Cam Atkinson against the Lightning, who've won six in a row, are on an eight-game point streak (7-0-1) and are 18-2-1 in the past 21 games.

Jones was placed on injured reserve Monday with an ankle injury sustained in a 2-1 loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday. Atkinson sustained a lower-body injury in the same game and there is no timetable for his return.

Forward Liam Foudy was recalled from London of the Ontario Hockey League on an emergency basis Monday and will make his NHL debut for the Blue Jackets, who are 9-1-1 in their past 11 games.

 

Players to watch

Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov has 18 points (eight goals, 10 assists) in a 10-game point streak. 

Blue Jackets goalie Elvis Merzlikins, the NHL No. 1 Star for the week ending Feb. 9, is 8-1-0 with 1.12 goals-against average, a .962 save percentage and five shutouts in his past nine games.

 

They said it

"He's a leader on this team and one of the top goal scorers in the League, so it's not easy losing a guy like that." -- Lightning defenseman Luke Schenn on Steven Stamkos

"I've got to get used to the pace of play and use my speed and try to have an impact on the game and play my game that got me here." -- Blue Jackets forward Liam Foudy

 

Lightning projected lineup

Ondrej Palat -- Brayden Point -- Nikita Kucherov

Alex Killorn -- Anthony Cirelli -- Tyler Johnson

Mathieu Joseph -- Cedric Paquette -- Pat Maroon

Carter Verhaeghe -- Mitchell Stephens -- Yanni Gourde

Victor Hedman -- Erik Cernak

Mikhail Sergachev -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Braydon Coburn -- Luke Schenn

Curtis McElhinney

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Scratched: Cameron Gaunce

Injured: Jan Rutta (lower body), Ryan McDonagh (lower body), Steven Stamkos (undisclosed)

 

Blue Jackets projected lineup

Nick Foligno -- Pierre-Luc Dubois -- Oliver Bjorkstrand

Gustav Nyquist -- Boone Jenner - Liam Foudy 

Sonny Milano -- Kevin Stenlund -- Emil Bemstrom

Eric Robinson -- Riley Nash -- Nathan Gerbe

Zach Werenski -- Markus Nutivaara

Vladislav Gavrikov -- David Savard

Scott Harrington -- Andrew Peeke

Elvis Merzlikins

Matiss Kivlenieks

Scratched: Gabriel Carlsson

Injured: Brandon Dubinsky (wrist), Josh Anderson (shoulder), Ryan Murray (lower body), Alexandre Texier (back), Dean Kukan (knee), Alexander Wennberg (upper body), Joonas Korpisalo (knee), Seth Jones (ankle), Cam Atkinson (lower body)

 

Status report

Joseph was recalled from Syracuse of the American Hockey League on Monday … Carlsson, a defenseman, was recalled from Cleveland of the AHL on Monday.

 

Stat pack

Point has nine points (two goals, seven assists) in a six-game point streak. … Maroon will play his 500th NHL game.

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