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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, March 22nd (All times Eastern)

Tampa Bay Lightning (39-24-7) at Pittsburgh Penguins (45-19-5), 1 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Lightning have a chance to post their longest winning streak of the season on Saturday afternoon, but in order to do so they will need to snap a lengthy slide to the division-leading Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Lightning have won five in a row for the second time this season, giving them a two-point edge over the third-place Montreal Canadiens in the Atlantic Division with a game in hand. The Bolts are also five points ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs, who host the Habs tonight, but a distant 16 points back of the first-place Boston Bruins.

Tampa will try to further secure that second spot, but will need to snap an eight-game series losing streak to Pittsburgh. That includes a pair of setbacks this season at home and the Bolts have lost six straight in Pittsburgh.

Of course, none of these streaks include the 2011 Eastern Conference quarterfinals, when the Lightning bested the Penguins in seven games.

Tampa Bay kept rolling with Thursday's 5-4 victory over the Ottawa Senators. Eric Brewer and Ryan Callahan both scored third-period goals, with Callahan giving his club a two-goal lead at the 11:58 mark.

However, the forward spent the final 56 seconds in the penalty box after getting called for slashing, a penalty that came not long after the Sens scored to make it a one-goal game.

Teddy Purcell snapped a 19-game goal drought by lighting the lamp just 23 seconds in and added a second tally later in the contest. Valtteri Filppula also scored to match a career high with his 23rd goal of the season, one that extended his point streak to seven games (3 goals, 8 assists).

Ben Bishop made 27 saves to win in his 100th NHL game.

"We keep getting goals from different players and we've buckled down on defense when we've needed to," said Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.

The Lightning have not won six straight since a seven-game win streak from Jan. 17-Feb. 4, 2012 and Bishop is just 0-2-0 with a 4.43 goals against average in his career versus the Penguins.

Pittsburgh has lost three of its last four games, and though it has a comfortable edge for first place in the Metropolitan Division, the club sits six points behind the Bruins for the top seed in the East.

The Penguins did earn a point in Thursday's 5-4 overtime setback to the Detroit Red Wings, but felt disappointed to miss out on the second point. That is because Pittsburgh failed to score during a five-minute power play that bridged the end of the third period and overtime and then saw Detroit score the game-winner with just 0.4 seconds on the clock.

Detroit had spent the final 3:46 of regulation and first 1:14 of overtime a man down after David Legwand was given a major and game misconduct for jamming Evgeni Malkin with the butt end of his stick in front of the net.

Then, with time winding down, a turnover in the Detroit end saw the Red Wings go the other way on a 3-on-1. Skating down the right wing, Daniel Alfredsson let fly with a shot that Marc-Andre Fleury stopped, but the rebound came out front, went off Pittsburgh's Rob Scuderi and made it into the net just before the final buzzer.

"We got down again and answered with a big goal in the third," said Pittsburgh head coach Dan Bylsma. "We had that power play, the five-minute major from the butt end, and we should have been able to put it away but they killed it off."

Malkin scored twice with Lee Stempniak and Craig Adams also lighting the lamp for the Penguins. Fleury stopped 25 shots in the loss.

Pittsburgh will play four straight and six of its next seven at home, where it is 25-5-2 on the season.

Fleury is 15-10-3 with a 2.39 goals against average and two shutouts in his career versus the Lightning.

03/22 10:30:25 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
WAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
CHA
 
Final
CLE 110
GSW 99
Final
PHO 117
OKC 113
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IND
CLE
 
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PHI
WAS
 
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BOS
CHA
 
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TOR
GSW
 
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NYK
 
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ATL
ORL
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
BRK
 
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MEM
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NOP
MIA
 
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CHI
MIN
 
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DEN
UTA
 
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SAC
SAN
 
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LAL
MIL
 
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POR
OKC
 
Final
KNST 53
NKENTUCKY 78
 
Final
CITA 74
ETST 73
 
Final
GWEBB 91
CSOU 81
 
Final
VMI 82
CHAT 86
 
Final
BRY 77
CCST 69
 
Final
PBY 80
CCAR 69
 
Final
DREX 44
DEL 58
 
Final
UNCA 71
HIGH 75
 
Final
TEMPL 66
HOU 54
Final
EKENT 63
JVST 57
 
Final
WRST 58
UWMIL 61
 
Final
MSU 90
MINN 96
Final
RFLSH 63
MNTER 60
 
Final
OSU 81
NEB 57
Final
MAST 67
NEOM 73
 
Final
ELON 72
NE 65
 
Final
LIB 80
RAD 69
 
Final
FD 85
SHU 90
 
Final
UNCG 81
SAMF 67
 
Final
LIU 69
Terriers 74
 
Final
TENN 65
VANDY 73
Final
RMU 91
WAGN 59
 
Final
FUR 53
WCU 49
 
Final
IUPUI 71
WILL 66
 
Final
CAMP 65
WINT 50
 
Final
MERC 72
WOFF 76
 
Final
APP 58
GSOUT 77
 
Final
UNT 81
CHAR 65
Final
MURST 65
EILL 57
 
Final
MARS 87
FIU 69
Final
WKENT 71
FATL 68
Final
ILLCH 67
UWGB 72
 
Final
ORU 74
NDST 58
 
Final
NDAK 75
NARZ 85
 
Final
RICE 54
ODU 63
Final
MON 60
RIDE 63
 
Final
PEAY 64
SIUE 61
 
Final
LATU 77
UTEP 60
Final
SMISS 70
TXSA 66
Final
TENST 52
TENNM 69
 
Final
CHIST 74
GRCN 70
 
Final
UMKC 69
WLVRN 50
 
Final
SALA 57
LAMON 75
 
Final
ARKST 81
TXARL 80
 
Final
ARKLR 92
UGST 83
 
Final
TXST 67
TROY 61
 
Final
COL 54
ARZ 82
Final
PURD 92
RUTG 85
Final
MEM 57
SMU 66
Final
NCOL 77
SUTAH 67
 
Final
MORE 86
TENT 73
 
Final
EWASH 92
MNTST 68
 
Final
PORT 69
BYU 82
 
Final
CSNO 82
CSFU 72
 
Final
IDAHO 92
MONT 87
 
Final
SCU 57
PAC 64
 
Final
UCSB 74
UCD 60
 
Final
CPSL 56
UCI 63
 
Final
UTAH 83
ARST 41
Final
STAN 75
ORST 48
Final
GONZ 59
SDU 39
Final
USF 53
GAELS 84
 
Final
HAW 78
LBSU 59
 
6:00pm Tonight
QUIN
SIENA
 
6:30pm Tonight
CORN
HARV
 
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CAN
FAIR
 
7:00pm Tonight
IONA
MAN
 
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BRO
PENN
 
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YALE
PRIN
 
7:00pm Tonight
MAR
PETE
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLMB
DART
 
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AKR
OHIO
 
10:00pm Tonight
CLST
VALPO
 
Final
NYR 4
ARI 3
Final
CLB 2
MON 5
Final
BUF 6
VAN 3
Final
FLA 0
CHI 3
Final
TOR 3
PHI 2
Final
WIN 1
STL 2
Final
NAS 2
MIN 4
Final
SJS 2
DET 3
Final
LOS 0
OTT 1
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NJD
BOS
 
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NYI
CAL
 
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CAR
WAS
 
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TAM
CHI
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
COL
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
LOS