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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Sunday, March 2nd (All times Eastern)

Tampa Bay Lightning (34-21-5) at Colorado Avalanche (38-17-5), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Colorado Avalanche aim to avoid their first loss at home to the Tampa Bay Lightning in 10 years as the two clubs square off on Sunday night at Pepsi Center.

The Avs have split their first two games coming out of the Olympic break, losing to the Los Angeles Kings on Wednesday before rebounding with a 4-2 triumph over the Phoenix Coyotes on Friday.

Gabriel Landeskog had a goal and two assists, while Paul Stastny scored and set up another tally. Nathan MacKinnon notched two assists and Semyon Varlamov posted 40 saves.

The teams entered the final frame knotted up at 1-1, but Nate Guenin scored just 48 seconds into the period off an assist from Landeskog. Stastny added a goal just over five minutes later and Landeskog scored on the power play with 3:11 to go.

"I thought we were good in the first (period), tough in the second and came on strong in the third. We played well as a team and guys got open tonight," said MacKinnon, who extended the longest point streak by a rookie this season to 10 straight.

He has five goals and nine assists over that run.

Colorado sits three points back of second place in the Central Division and is eligible to have defenseman Erik Johnson in the lineup tonight. Johnson sat out the first two games following the break to serve a suspension for a slash versus the New York Islanders on Feb. 8.

The Avalanche have won seven of their past nine versus the Lightning, but did lose 5-2 in Tampa on Jan. 25. However, they have won four straight and are 7-1-0 with a tie in the past nine meetings in Colorado, where Tampa Bay hasn't won since March 1, 2004.

Varlamov is 5-2-1 with a 2.04 goals against average and two shutouts in his career versus the Lightning. He did not start against them in January, but came in relief in the third period.

Tyler Johnson netted his first career hat trick for the Bolts, while Victor Hedman collected three assists and Ben Bishop made 25 saves in the win over Colorado.

Bishop helped key the Lightning to a 4-2 win over the Dallas Stars on Saturday, posting 39 saves. Tampa Bay had lost five of seven going in and has split the first two of a four-game road trip.

Martin St. Louis scored twice for a second straight game, while Sami Salo and Nate Thompson added goals.

"Bishop has been the MVP of this team from the beginning," said St. Louis said. "Without Bishop, I don't know where we are right now."

Where Tampa Bay does find itself is third in the Atlantic Division and two points back of the second-place Montreal Canadiens.

03/02 17:12:40 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 31
UCONN 21
Final
CHA 79
IND 88
Final
CAL 5
CAR 0
9:30pm Tonight
EDM
CAR
 
8:07pm Tonight
SFG
KAN
Final
CHA 79
IND 88
Final
DET 109
PHI 103
Final
NOP 88
DAL 85
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
DAL
 
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
NYK
 
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
MIA
 
8:00pm Tonight
CHI
MIN
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
SAN
 
9:00pm Tonight
UTA
PHO
 
10:00pm Tonight
LAL
SAC
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
DEN
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
POR
 
Final
ECU 31
UCONN 21
Final
VT 6
MIAMI 30
7:00pm Tonight
CIN
SFLA
7:30pm Tonight
SALABAMA
TROY
9:00pm Tonight
BSU
BYU
10:00pm Tonight
CAL
OREG
Final
BOS 2
NYI 3
Final
DET 4
PIT 3
Final
MIN 2
ARI 0
Final
NAS 3
CHI 2
Final
STL 1
VAN 4
Final
CAL 5
CAR 0
Final
LOS 2
BUF 0
Final
SJS 4
CLB 5
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
DAL
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
TAM
 
9:00pm Tonight
COL
VAN
 
9:30pm Tonight
EDM
CAR
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
CLB
 
Final
DEN 35
SDC 21