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game preview

Lightning at Senators preview

Stamkos looks to stay hot for Tampa Bay; Ottawa seeking first win

by Callum Fraser / Independent Correspondent

LIGHTNING (2-1-1) at SENATORS (0-3-0)

4 p.m. ET; TVAS2, TSN5, SUN, NHL.TV


The Game

The Ottawa Senators will try for their first win of the season when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning at Canadian Tire Centre on Saturday.

The Senators are off to the worst start in their history. They have been outscored 15-8 and are coming off a 6-4 home loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday.

The Lightning, who are third in the NHL with an average of 4.50 goals per game, are coming off a 7-3 win at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday. They are playing the fourth game of a six-game road trip.

Andrei Vasilevskiy could start for Tampa Bay. Voted the Vezina Trophy winner last season as the NHL's best goalie, he is 2-1-0 with a 3.05 goals-against average and .903 save percentage in three games (all starts) this season.


Players to watch

Lightning forward Steven Stamkos has six points (three goals, three assists) during a three-game point streak.

Senators forward Brady Tkachuk has two goals in three games.


They said it

"We've just got to get through this. And to play on the road, it can be a good thing early on in the year, especially with a bunch of guys that don't know each other. This is a really good time to spend a lot of time with each other. The negative to it, you're not going home anytime soon to get out of any funk when home ice can sometimes do that for you." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper

"You're going to have to be aware of who's on the ice because it's kind of similar with [a team like] Toronto, [Tampa Bay's] top two lines are maybe even better. (Forward Nikita) Kucherov had a [heck] of a year last year, so you're going to have to be aware of who's on the ice when you're there, and you're going to have to make sure to not give them any room and time to make plays because they'll make you pay." -- Senators defenseman Thomas Chabot


Lightning projected lineup

Steven Stamkos -- Brayden Point -- Nikita Kucherov

Ondrej Palat -- Anthony Cirelli -- Alex Killorn

Mathieu Joseph -- Tyler Johnson -- Yanni Gourde

Pat Maroon -- Carter Verhaeghe -- Luke Witkowski

Victor Hedman -- Mikhail Sergachev

Ryan McDonagh -- Erik Cernak

Braydon Coburn -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Andrei Vasilevskiy

Curtis McElhinney

Scratched: Jan Rutta

Injured: Cedric Paquette (upper body)


Senators projected lineup

Brady Tkachuk -- Colin White -- Tyler Ennis

Anthony Duclair -- Chris Tierney -- Bobby Ryan

Vladislav Namestnikov -- Artem Anisimov -- Connor Brown

Vitaly Abramov -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Scott Sabourin

Thomas Chabot -- Nikita Zaitsev

Erik Brannstrom -- Ron Hainsey

Mark Borowiecki -- Dylan DeMelo

Craig Anderson

Anders Nilsson

Scratched: Mikkel Boedker, Cody Goloubef

Injured: None


Status report

Paquette isn't expected to play during the road trip. … Senators coach D.J. Smith said his lineup hasn't been decided, but there "might not be a ton of change."


Stat pack

Point had two goals and an assist Thursday in his season debut following offseason hip surgery. … Ryan needs one assist for 300 in the NHL.

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