Pre-game Notes and Quotes
  • Tampa Bay Head Coach Jon Cooper: “It’s just kind of how we play, how we play offense. But, it’s getting five (goals). We’ve got to get away from the ones and the twos and I like the fact that we only gave up two tonight, we only gave up two to Vancouver. Unfortunately, we scored one, but we’ve got to get back to that cusp of getting three or more goals a game, and it gives us a chance to win. When we’re doing that, we’re winning these games.”
  • David Desharnais on the Canadiens’ loss to Washington Saturday night: “We did a lot of good things, but it just isn’t enough. We need to find a way to get our mojo back and play the way we did at the beginning of the year. We have to give our goaltender a bit of a cushion, too. When we get scored on first, we have a tendency to slow down and fall apart. The first goal is important. Everyone has to give more.”
  • Captain Max Pacioretty: “We’re doing a lot of good things, but I can’t stress it enough – it’s just that extra little push that we need to have. Sometimes, you’re missing that and you don’t know why. It could be your confidence. Nobody is going to feel sorry for us if this keeps going, though. There will be consequences.”
  • The Canadiens are mired in a slump of late as they have lost six games in a row and only have only a single win in their past 11 games. The Lightning haven’t been the powerhouse most expected of late, as they have a 3-3 record in their past six home games and are 3-2 (one OT win) in their past five games.
  • While the Canadiens have a 16-5-3 record versus teams in the Eastern Conference this season, the Lightning boast a 13-6-3 record.
  • The Canadiens have dropped down in the goals against category, they are currently 15th in the league in goals against, with 92 in 37 games. The Lightning defensive game has been very good, as they have allowed only 84 goals against in their first 36 games and are 5th in the league.
  • The Canadiens have surprisingly maintained their standing in the goals for category as they are currently in fifth place in the NHL, with 106 over their first 37 games. The Lightning have been much closer to average than many pundits predicted, as they currently sit in 19th with 92 goals.
Matchup 
Amalie Arena, Tampa, FL. | December 28, 7:30 PM ET | TV: RDS, SNE, SUN

2015-16 statistics

LIGHTNING CANADIENS
39 (9th) Points (Eastern Con. rank) 43 (6th)
18-15-3 Record 20-14-3
9-7-1 Home 11-6-2
9-8-2 Road 9-8-1
6-4-0 Last 10 1-9-0
2.56 G/G 2.86
2.33 GA/G 2.49
18.1 PP% 19.2
78.0 PK% 85.1
 52.3  CF%*  53.7
54.4 CF60*  56.8
49.6 CA60* 48.9
*Advanced statistics: Score adjusted, even strength. CF%: Corsi for percentage of total  CF60: Corsi For/60 minutes  CA60: Corsi Against/60 minutes (via War on Ice)
Projected forward lines, defense pairings and goaltenders
Forwards
Namestnikov – Stamkos – Kucherov
Killorn – Filppula – Callahan
Marchessault – Paquette – Condra
Angelidis – Richard – Blunden
Pacioretty – Desharnais – Weise
Eller – Galchenyuk – Carr
Fleischmann – Plekanec – Byron
Flynn – Mitchell – Andrighetto
Expected scratches: Smith-Pelly
Defensemen
Hedman – Stralman
Carle – Garrison
Coburn – Sustr
Markov – Subban
Beaulieu – Petry
Barberio – Pateryn
Expected scratches: Gilbert, Tinordi, Emelin
Goalies
Ben Bishop (Confirmed) Mike Condon (Confirmed)
2015-’16 regular season:
Record: 15-11-2
GAA: 2.00
Sv%: .927
SO: 1
Alternate: Kristers Gudlevskis
2015-’16 regular season:
Record: 9-9-3
GAA: 2.46
Sv%: .903
SO: 0
Alternate: Ben Scrivens
Fantasy Outlook
  • Jonathan Marchessault has definitely proved his has the offensive potential over his past 4 full seasons in the AHL, posting 254 points in 295 games so far in his career. While he does stand at only 5′ 9″ and weighs 174 lbs, he does not seems to be letting that slow him down from sticking in the NHL. He started the season in the AHL and had 9 points in 11 games, but seems to be forcing the Tampa Bay management to make room for him in their lineup with his play of late. He currently has a 6 game point streak (4 goals and 3 assists) going and with injuries to Johnson and Palat, the Tampa Bay forward core could use all the help they can get. Keep an eye out for Marchessault to continue his streak when the Bolts play his hometown team (he hails from Cap-Rouge, QC), the Canadiens, Monday night. He’s a cheap option in daily leagues and could be helpful in deep leagues.
  • Top scorers for the Lightning at home this season are:
  1. Steven Stamkos (with 19 points in 17 games).
  2. Nikita Kucherov (with 114 points in 17 games)
  3. Alex Killorn (with 10 points in 16 games)
  • Top scorers for the Canadiens on the road this season are:
  1. Andrei Markov (with 14 points in 18 games)
  2. Tomas Plekanec, Max Pacioretty, Alex Galchenyuk and P. K. Subban (all with 13 points in 18 games)

Player stats from War-on-Ice, NHL.com and Yahoo Sports.

Recap: Canadiens vs Capitals (December 26) – Click for Game report, 3-stars, Post-game quotes
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