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St. Louis, Bolts aim to extend Capitals' struggles

(SportsNetwork.com) - Martin St. Louis didn't let being kept off the Canadian Olympic team affect his play in helping Tampa Bay earn a win in its most recent outing.

St. Louis will try to spur the Lightning to their fourth victory in five games when they host the struggling Washington Capitals in Thursday's test at Tampa Bay Times Forum.

The 38-year-old St. Louis wasn't among those picked to represent Team Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics when the Canadian side was announced on Tuesday, even though Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman was the man in charge of choosing the team. The classy veteran shrugged off the snub, however, scoring two goals in the third period later that night to lead the Bolts to a 4-2 road win over the Winnipeg Jets.

"I'm happy we got the win," St. Louis said. "In regards to Team Canada you obviously know how I feel, I'm disappointed and I'll just leave it at that."

Although St. Louis was not selected, Yzerman, the executive director of Team Canada, did tab his Lightning teammate Steven Stamkos to go to Sochi. Stamkos, of course, is still sidelined following surgery to repair a broken right tibia, but he is expected to be ready to play when the Winter Games begin next month.

Ondrej Palat and Valtteri Filppula also lit the lamp on Tuesday, while Teddy Purcell and Alex Killorn both had two assists. Anders Lindback made 12 saves in the win as Tampa wrapped a four-game road trip with a 3-1-0 record.

"This is a tough place to play on the road, and I thought we just played an outstanding road game," said Lightning coach Jon Cooper.

With regular No. 1 goaltender Ben Bishop expected to miss a second straight game with an upper-body injury, Lindback is likely to get another start on Thursday.

The Lightning are home for one game before heading back out on the road for a three-game swing. The Bolts, who are 14-4-2 at home and 12-9-2 as the guest, will begin their road trip Saturday in Philadelphia.

The Capitals are capping a two-game swing tonight, but they haven't played since dropping the opener of the jaunt Saturday in Minnesota. The loss to the Wild was the fourth straight for Washington and its sixth setback in seven games.

Ryan Suter notched the first hat trick of his career and first-ever for a Minnesota defenseman to lift the Wild to the 5-3 win Saturday at Xcel Energy Center.

Mike Green scored twice in the loss while Marcus Johansson also lit the lamp for the Capitals, who tied their longest losing streak of the season. Braden Holtby allowed all five goals on just 11 shots as Washington fell to 0-2-2 during its slide.

"We played a good hockey team and shut them down," said Washington forward Brooks Laich. "They only got 11 shots on net and it's confusing what happened. That's not going to happen very often."

Washington also lost four in a row (0-3-1) from Nov. 20-27, but the club hasn't dropped five straight since an 0-6-2 stretch from Dec. 2-18, 2010.

The Capitals won the first meeting of the season with the Lightning, posting a 6-5 home shootout decision on Dec. 10. Washington has won four in a row in this series, including a 6-5 home overtime win in the final meeting between the clubs last season.

Tampa had won four straight home games against the Capitals until Washington snapped that streak with a 4-3 regulation win at the Forum on Feb. 14 of last season.

01/09 11:04:29 ET

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Schedule

Thursday, April 24Full Scoreboard
Boston 4/24 8:00 PM ET
Detroit NBCSN, TSN, NESN, FSN-DET
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Boston leads series, 2-1.
Colorado 4/24 9:30 PM ET
Minnesota CNBC, TSN2, Alt, FSN-N,WI
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Colorado leads series, 2-1.
San Jose 4/24 10:30 PM ET
Los Angeles NBCSN, CBC, FSN-W, CSN-CA
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. San Jose leads series, 3-0.
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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Scoreboard
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CHR
DUR
 
Final
CLE 5
KAN 1
Final
PIT 1
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DET 5
CWS 4
 
7th
TAM 5
MIN 9
 
8th
NYM 4
STL 1
 
5th
CHC 1
ARI 3
 
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MIN
COL
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LOS
SJS
7:05pm Tonight
CHR
DUR