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Carolina Hurricanes vs. Tampa Bay Lightning: Game Preview and Discussion

The Hurricanes take on the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight as each team tries to snap its own two-game losing streak.

Jamie Kellner

The Hurricanes take on last season’s Presidents’ Trophy winner tonight in Tampa as they look to bounce back from a shutout loss to the Predators last night.

Vital Statistics

Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Category Hurricanes Blue Jackets
Record 21-7-3 13-13-7
Goals/Game 3.23 2.54
Goals Against/Game 2.48 3.12
Shots/Game 31.52 28.70
Face Off Win % 54.4% 46.2%
Power Play % (Rank) 30.6% (1st) 14.8% (26th)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 82.9% (9th) 74.0% (26th)
ES Corsi For % 53.04% 46.16%
ES PDO 100.96 99.42
PIM/Game 07:21 06:43

Goaltender #1

Category James Reimer Joonas Korpisalo
Category James Reimer Joonas Korpisalo
Record 12-4-1 8-10-5
Save % 0.909 .900
GAA 2.68 2.98

Goaltender #2

Category Alex Nedeljkovic Elvis Merzlikins
Category Alex Nedeljkovic Elvis Merzlikins
Record 7-2-2 5-3-2
Save % .930 .912
GAA 1.96 2.91

Game Notes

  • The Hurricanes and Lightning are meeting for the second of three matchups this season. Tampa will return to PNC Arena on January 5th.
  • The Canes climbed back from a 3-1 deficit to down the Lightning in overtime in their first meeting on October 6th. Dougie Hamilton (1g, 1a) and Andrei Svechnikov (2a) both posted multi-point games.
  • The Lightning tallied just 13 shots on goal against the Hurricanes in their first matchup, including only two shots in the final 44 minutes of the game. For reference, the Hurricanes recorded three shots on goal in the overtime frame alone.
  • James Reimer comes into tonight’s game having won each of his last two starts, including a 19 save shutout in Detroit last week. Reimer has posted a 4-2-0 record on the road this season.
  • Facing Reimer tonight will be the man who he replaced as Carolina’s number two. Curtis McElhinney will likely make his second start against the Hurricanes this season. He sports a 3-1-2 record, with one of those overtime losses a hard-luck defeat to the Canes in October.

Lines and Rosters


We expect the Hurricanes to line up similar to last night, with the exception of a swap in net in the back-to-back situation. If there are any changes to the lineup, Rod Brind’Amour provided no hints last night, and without a morning skate we’ll have to wait until warmups to see if the Canes will have a different look tonight.

Nino Niederreiter - Jordan Staal - Warren Foegele
Andrei Svechnikov - Sebastian Aho - Teuvo Teravainen
Ryan Dzingel - Lucas Wallmark - Martin Necas
Brock McGinn - Clark Bishop - Jordan Martinook

Jaccob Slavin - Dougie Hamilton
Joel Edmundson - Brett Pesce
Jake Gardiner - Haydn Fleury

James Reimer
Petr Mrazek

Injuries and Scratches: Erik Haula (knee), Trevor van Riemsdyk (healthy)


The Lightning come into tonight’s matchup riding a two-game losing streak of their own after falling to the Capitals in overtime last night. Still outside a playoff spot, it’s quickly getting to be crunch time in Tampa, where the Lightning have looked much more like the team that was swept out of the playoffs by the Blue Jackets last April than the 128-point juggernaut that dominated the regular season. Here’s how they will likely look tonight:

Ondrej Palat - Brayden Point - Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn - Steven Stamkos - Anthony Cirelli
Patrick Maroon - Cedric Paquette - Yanni Gourde
Jan Rutta - Tyler Johnson - Mathieu Joseph

Victor Hedman - Kevin Shattenkirk
Ryan McDonagh - Mikhail Sergachev
Braydon Coburn - Luke Schenn

Curtis McElhinney
Andrei Vasilevskiy