NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, March 15th
(All times Eastern)
New Jersey Devils (29-25-13) at Tampa Bay Lightning (35-24-7), 7 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Lightning saw Steven Stamkos and Ryan
Callahan score long-awaited goals in Thursday's skid-stopping victory.
The duo will try to keep the Bolts headed in the right direction on Saturday
night in a home meeting with the New Jersey Devils.
Both Stamkos and Callahan potted tallies in Thursday's 5-4 triumph over the
Florida Panthers, one that halted the Lightning's 0-3-2 skid. The much-needed
win has Tampa Bay tied with the Montreal Canadiens for third place in the
Atlantic Division, three points behind the second-place Toronto Maple Leafs.
Stamkos, who also had an assist, got his first points in four games since
coming back from a broken leg suffered on Nov. 11. That injury sidelined Tampa
Bay's new captain for 45 straight games.
Callahan, meanwhile, got his first goal in four games since being acquired in
a trade with the New York Rangers in the deal that shipped Martin St. Louis to
the Big Apple.
Tyler Johnson, Sami Salo and Michael Kostka all added goals on Thursday, with
Johnson stretching his point streak to five straight games (4 goals, 1
Valtteri Filppula finished with three assists and Ben Bishop made 23 saves,
though he did allow a pair of goals in the game's final 1:05 to make it a
"For 59 minutes I think we stuck to the game plan," said Stamkos. "We could
have easily put our tail between our legs after they scored those two quick
goals, but that's one thing we talked about, no matter what happens in the
game, let's stay on it. We did and I thought we deserved the win today."
Tampa Bay is 1-1-2 on a six-game homestand that ends on Monday versus
Bishop is likely to start tonight and has solid career numbers versus the
Devils in four starts, posting a 1.45 goals against average and .950 save
percentage with a 2-2-0 record.
The Devils will be looking to bounce back tonight after having a two-game win
streak halted with Friday's 5-3 setback to the Florida Panthers. New Jersey
carried a one-goal edge into the final period, but saw the Panthers score the
final three goals of the contest.
Cory Schneider yielded four goals on 21 shots, giving up the game-tying goal
at the 4:24 mark of the third period. He was then beaten by Florida's Scottie
Upshall from a sharp angle at the midway point of the frame for the game-
"I'm really not happy with that (Upshall) goal," Schneider said. "It deflates
the team. I never like goals to go under me or through me."
Schneider has yielded 15 goals in losing his past three starts.
Jaromir Jagr had a goal to give him three tallies and six points in his past
five games, while Bryce Salvador and Patrik Elias added goals for a Devils
club that remained two points out of a wild card position in the East.
New Jersey concludes a three-game road trip tonight before kicking off a
string of five in a row at home on Tuesday.
Schneider's recent struggles and playing on back-to-back nights lends itself
to Martin Brodeur starting versus the Lightning. He is 39-16-3 with a 2.08 GAA
and six shutouts lifetime in this matchup.
Brodeur has started the Devils' two previous games versus the Bolts this
season, giving up one goal on 50 shots in a pair of wins.
Both of those contests took place in New Jersey and tonight is the third and
final meeting between the clubs this season. The Devils have won eight of
their last 10 trips to Tampa.
03/15 10:29:03 ET
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