(SportsNetwork.com) – The Tampa Bay Lightning are currently riding the longest
home winning streak in club history, but the Atlantic Division leaders have
struggled on the road.
The Lightning try to snap a four-game road skid on Thursday night when they
visit the Dallas Stars.
Tampa Bay ran its home winning streak to 10 straight games with a victory over
the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday, but lost the first of two straight on
the road Tuesday night.
The Lightning visited the St. Louis Blues and failed to hold a late lead in
dropping a 2-1 decision in overtime. Tampa Bay yielded the game-tying goal
with 3:10 left in regulation, then saw St. Louis score the winner 1:16 into
“They’re a ticked off group right now, and they should be. Because ultimately,
in the end, we didn’t close it out,” said Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.
The Lightning are 5-1-1 in their past seven games overall, but fell to 0-3-1
in their last four on the road despite Cedric Paquette scoring for a fourth
game in a row. He has six tallies over that span, while Jonathan Drouin has
five assists in his last four games.
Ben Bishop made just 16 saves versus the Blues and is 1-1-0 lifetime against
the Stars with a 3.62 goals against average and .899 save percentage in two
The Bolts lead both the Montreal Canadiens and Detroit Red Wings by two points
for first place in the Atlantic Division, while the Stars are five points back
of a wild card spot in the Western Conference.
Dallas is also coming off a tough-luck defeat, bested 3-2 in a shootout by the
Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday. The Stars failed to hold a two-goal lead, with
the Avs tying the contest with only 20 seconds left in regulation.
The Stars then had the Avs down to their final shooter in the tiebreaker
twice, but Colorado answered both times and eventually won it on Maxime
Talbot’s 11th-round tally.
“You can’t play any better and lose,” said Stars coach Lindy Ruff. “We gave up
nothing for 60 minutes. I don’t think they had five chances to score the whole
game, until maybe overtime they had a couple. You can’t really play any better
than that, on the defensive side anyway.”
Patrick Eaves and Erik Cole — who had missed the previous three games with an
upper-body injury — scored in regulation for Dallas, which was aiming to
extend its winning streak to three games. Kari Lehtonen stopped 22 shots,
including eight in overtime.
Lehtonen is 12-8-3 lifetime against the Lightning with a 2.43 GAA and .926
save percentage in 24 meetings.
The Bolts have won four of their past six versus the Stars overall and five of
the last seven in Dallas.