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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, December 19th (All times Eastern)

Nashville Predators (16-15-3) at Tampa Bay Lightning (20-11-3), 7:30 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Lightning know they were fortunate to come away with a victory last time out. Still, they return home having won three of their last four games and seek another victory on Thursday night against the Nashville Predators.

Having split the first two contests of a three-game road trip, the Lightning found themselves trailing the New York Islanders by two goals with less than three minutes left in regulation during Tuesday's meeting on Long Island.

However, Valtteri Filppula scored twice late and had one of two Tampa Bay shootout goals in a 3-2 victory, with Nikita Kucherov notching the deciding tally in the tiebreaker and Ben Bishop ending with 32 saves.

"We passed up too many shots tonight, but the boys stuck with it and we probably stole a couple points tonight," said Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.

Filppula got the comeback started when he scored with a wrister from the right slot with 2:53 on the clock, then converted on a backhander with Bishop pulled and just 3.8 ticks remaining in regulation.

J.T. Brown and Martin St. Louis assisted on Filppula's 12th goal of the season.

"The first goal I got was a lucky one," Filppula said. "I was surprised I got the puck, but I was happy it went in. On the second one there was a lot of guys in front of the net and I just stayed out of the pile hoping the puck would make its way out and to me."

Tampa Bay is 4-1-2 over its last seven games and could have defenseman Victor Hedman back in the lineup for the first time in seven games. He has been out with a lower-body injury.

The Predators were not as lucky last time out, having a three-game win streak snapped with a 3-1 loss to the visiting Chicago Blackhawks.

Shea Weber had a first-period goal and Nashville logged 17 shots in the opening frame, but still came out of the period down a goal and only managed 11 shots the rest of the way.

"I thought we had a real good first period, maybe one of our better first periods of the year and we're down 2-1. That's ironic how it is," Nashville coach Barry Trotz said. "They're a good, high-executing team."

Carter Hutton had yielded just four goals in total over the three-game win streak, but yielded three on 27 shots faced Tuesday.

Hutton was backed up versus the Blackhawks by Magnus Hellberg after Marek Mazanec missed the contest due to illness. Hellberg has since been returned to the minors, though the rookie Hutton is still likely to make his first career start versus the Lightning.

Bishop, who is 11-2-0 with a 1.90 goals against average in 13 starts at home this season, has never faced the Predators.

Nashville has won three in a row over the Lightning, but is 2-3-0 with two ties in seven all-time games at Tampa. The Preds did win their most recent trip there, 4-3 on Oct. 24, 2010.

12/19 11:52:11 ET

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Schedule

Monday, April 21Full Scoreboard
Pittsburgh 4/21 7:00 PM ET
Columbus NBCSN, CBC, ROOT, FSN-OH
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Three. Series tied, 1-1.
Colorado 4/21 7:00 PM ET
Minnesota TSN, NHL Net, Altitude
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Three. Colorado leads series, 2-0.
St. Louis 4/21 8:30 PM ET
Chicago CNBC, CBC, FSN-MW, CSN
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Three. St. Louis leads series, 2-0.
Anaheim 4/21 9:30 PM ET
Dallas NBCSN, TSN, RDS
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Three. Anaheim leads series, 2-0.
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 NHL Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
p-Boston 54 19 9 117 261 177 31-7-3 23-12-6 18-9-3
x-Tampa Bay 46 27 9 101 240 215 25-10-6 21-17-3 19-8-3
x-Montreal 46 28 8 100 215 204 23-13-5 23-15-3 18-8-4
x-Detroit 39 28 15 93 222 230 18-13-10 21-15-5 17-8-5
Ottawa 37 31 14 88 236 265 18-17-6 19-14-8 14-9-7
Toronto 38 36 8 84 231 256 24-16-1 14-20-7 14-13-3
Florida 29 45 8 66 196 268 16-20-5 13-25-3 13-16-1
Buffalo 21 51 10 52 157 248 13-21-7 8-30-3 7-18-5
 
Metropolitan Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Pittsburgh 51 24 7 109 249 207 28-9-4 23-15-3 20-8-2
x-NY Rangers 45 31 6 96 218 193 20-17-4 25-14-2 16-11-3
x-Philadelphia 42 30 10 94 236 235 24-14-3 18-16-7 15-11-4
x-Columbus 43 32 7 93 231 216 22-15-4 21-17-3 16-13-1
Washington 38 30 14 90 235 240 21-13-7 17-17-7 12-15-3
New Jersey 35 29 18 88 197 208 21-11-9 14-18-9 16-9-5
Carolina 36 35 11 83 207 230 18-17-6 18-18-5 15-13-2
NY Islanders 34 37 11 79 225 267 13-19-9 21-18-2 10-16-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
2013 - 2014 NHL Western Conference Standings
 
Central Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Colorado 52 22 8 112 250 220 26-11-4 26-11-4 19-6-3
x-St. Louis 52 23 7 111 248 191 28-9-4 24-14-3 21-6-2
x-Chicago 46 21 15 107 267 220 27-7-7 19-14-8 13-13-3
x-Minnesota 43 27 12 98 207 206 26-10-5 17-17-7 14-12-3
x-Dallas 40 31 11 91 235 228 23-11-7 17-20-4 13-11-5
Nashville 38 32 12 88 216 242 19-17-5 19-15-7 12-13-4
Winnipeg 37 35 10 84 227 237 18-17-6 19-18-4 9-15-5
 
Pacific Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
z-Anaheim 54 20 8 116 266 209 29-8-4 25-12-4 22-4-3
x-San Jose 51 22 9 111 249 200 29-7-5 22-15-4 18-7-3
x-Los Angeles 46 28 8 100 206 174 23-14-4 23-14-4 16-10-3
Phoenix 37 30 15 89 216 231 22-14-5 15-16-10 14-9-6
Vancouver 36 35 11 83 196 223 20-15-6 16-20-5 12-13-4
Calgary 35 40 7 77 209 241 19-19-3 16-21-4 11-15-3
Edmonton 29 44 9 67 203 270 16-22-3 13-22-6 8-17-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
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  • NASCAR: Toyota Owner's 400 from Richmond

    Saturday at 7:00 pm on FOX50

  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Sunday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • MiLB: Bulls at Norfolk

    Tonight at 7:00 on 620am

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    Tomorrow at 7:00 pm on 620am

  • MiLB: Bulls at Charlotte

    Wednesday at 11:05 am on 620am

  • MLB: LA Angels at NY Yankees

    Saturday at 1:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
12:05pm Today
NOR
DUR
 
3rd
BOS 0
BAL 3
 
7:05pm Tonight
PIT
CIN
7:05pm Tonight
CLE
KAN
7:05pm Tonight
WAS
ANA
7:08pm Tonight
DET
CWS
7:10pm Tonight
ATL
MIA
7:10pm Tonight
NYM
STL
8:05pm Tonight
CHC
ARI
8:10pm Tonight
MIL
SDP
8:40pm Tonight
COL
SFG
10:05pm Tonight
OAK
TEX
10:10pm Tonight
SEA
HOU
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
PHI
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
MEM
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
GSW
7:00pm Tonight
MIN
COL
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
PIT
8:30pm Tonight
CHI
STL
9:30pm Tonight
DAL
ANA
12:05pm Today
NOR
DUR