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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, January 3rd (All times Eastern)

Tampa Bay Lightning (24-12-4) at Calgary Flames (14-20-6), 9 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Tampa Bay Lightning look for a second victory in as many games on their current road trip Friday night as they visit a Calgary Flames club that continues to struggle on offense.

The Lightning began a four-game swing through Western Canada with a 4-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday. It was Tampa Bay's fourth straight win on the road and gave the club a 6-1-1 record over its last eight games overall.

Valtteri Filppula, Tyler Johnson and Nikita Kucherov all scored in the third period for the Lightning, who also visit Edmonton and Winnipeg on the trip, and Ben Bishop made 28 saves.

Filppula, who also had an assist, and Johnson scored 20 seconds apart to give the Bolts the lead and Kucherov responded with a power-play tally with three seconds left in the frame just over four minutes after the Canucks tied it.

Alex Killorn had a goal in the third period after assisting on Filppula's goal.

"We played a solid road game," Tampa Bay head coach Jon Cooper said. "We fell behind, found a way to get the lead and held on to it."

Filppula has notched 32 points in 40 games this season, including five goals and seven assists over his last eight games, while Johnson has three goals and an assist in his past four.

Bishop improved to 21-5-3 with a 1.89 goals against average and .935 save percentage in 30 starts this season. He is 0-2-0 with a 3.55 GAA in two previous meetings with the Flames.

Calgary looks to avoid a fourth consecutive defeat tonight and has been outscored 8-1 over its current slump. The Flames began a five-game homestand with a shootout win over St. Louis on Dec. 23, but were shut out by Edmonton and Vancouver in their first two games after the Christmas break.

Rookie Sean Monahan finally got the Flames a goal in Tuesday's meeting with the Philadelphia Flyers, but it was the only one in a 4-1 setback.

"We're building a new culture and we have some young players who we want to give some ice time and learn what to do out there," said Calgary head coach Bob Hartley. "But right now is a tough time because we're not scoring goals."

Reto Berra gave up three goals on 20 shots for a Flames club that has been shut out in three of its last eight games.

While it might not help the offense, defenseman Dennis Wideman is on track to return tonight for the Flames. He has been sidelined since breaking his hand on Nov. 27, missing 16 straight games.

Forward Lee Stempniak did miss practice on Thursday, however, due to illness.

The Lightning have won seven of their past 10 versus the Flames and three of the previous four played in Calgary.

The Flames will give former Lightning goaltender Karri Ramo the start tonight. He was a sixth-round pick by the Bolts in 2004 and appeared in 48 games with the club through 2008-09 before going to the Kontinental Hockey League. He has never before faced Tampa Bay.

01/03 10:31:07 ET

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Local
Final
CAR 17
CLE 13
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JST
NCCU
 
Final
TOR 118
NYK 108
Final
CLE 105
MEM 91
Final
MIA 100
BOS 84
Final
BRK 110
DET 105
Final
SAC 108
LAL 101
Final
ORL 88
PHI 96
Final
WAS 92
PHO 104
Final
MIN 96
IND 100
Final
OKC 99
NOP 101
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
DEN
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
POR
 
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CHI
TOR
 
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MEM
UTA
 
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10:30pm Tonight
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FERST 82
 
Final
ARMY 72
MAINE 69
 
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QUIN 60
ORST 52
Final
CLST 69
USF 65
 
Final
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CCAR 72
 
Final
UWGB 66
ARKLR 46
 
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RAD 74
CORN 61
 
Final
UNT 62
CREI 58
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CAN 67
HC 48
 
Final
USB 67
GHND 52
 
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OKST 64
MD 73
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WINT 100
REIN 72
 
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UGST 68
SMISS 55
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NEOM 77
TXPA 72
 
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STLU 58
VERM 55
 
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UNCA 62
WCU 66
 
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EVAN 81
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HART 82
FIU 69
 
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VALPO 82
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LIP 69
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MONT 62
SD 67
 
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MTST 65
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BC 71
USC 75
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TROY 65
 
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UCI 55
 
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UGA 65
SHU 47
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APP 59
Final
KSU 53
NDST 52
 
Final
WASU 82
SJST 53
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UTEP 78
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Final
SEAT 66
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Final
DET 1
COL 2
Final
EDM 5
DAL 6
Final
BOS 4
BUF 3
Final
NYR 1
CAR 0
Final
CHI 4
TOR 0
Final
WIN 3
PHI 4
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NOS 14
ATL 30
Final
HOU 25
BAL 13
Final
CAR 17
CLE 13
Final
CHI 14
DET 20
Final
TAM 3
GBP 20
Final
PIT 20
KAN 12
Final
MIA 37
MIN 35
Final
NYJ 16
NEP 17
Final
STL 27
NYG 37
Final
OAK 26
BUF 24
Final
DAL 42
IND 7
Final
ARI 6
SEA 35
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