Tampa Bay at Winnipeg
When: 8:00 PM ET, Friday, October 24, 2014
Where: MTS Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice demanded more from his players earlier this week against Carolina - and the Jets gave it to him. They'll look to repeat the feat Friday as they entertain Steven Stamkos and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Winnipeg halted a four-game skid with an impressive 3-1 win over the Hurricanes on Tuesday but will have its hands full with a Lightning team that pulled out a 2-1 overtime win over Calgary later that night.
Tampa Bay's youth movement was on display in the triumph over the Flames, with Jonathan Drouin recording his first NHL point and Ondrej Palat scoring the overtime winner with an assist from fellow 2013-14 Calder Trophy finalist Tyler Johnson. Stamkos was kept quiet in that one but still leads the team in goals (five) and points (seven). The Lightning are 2-1-0 on a five-game road trip that concludes Saturday against the Minnesota Wild.
TV: 8 p.m. ET, Sun Sports (Tampa Bay), TSN3 (Winnipeg)
ABOUT THE LIGHTNING (4-2-1): Injury problems have forced Tampa Bay to get creative with its lineup. Of the 21 goals the Lightning have scored on the season, eight have come from three players who now are sidelined - defenseman Victor Hedman (three) and forwards Ryan Callahan (three) and Alex Killorn (two). "It's crazy, we are (seven) games in and we've lost Hedman, Killorn, Callahan and (defenseman Radko Gudas) in a quick little stretch," Lightning coach Jon Cooper told the Tampa Tribune. "Key members of our team."
ABOUT THE JETS (2-4-0): Winnipeg thinks it may have a big solution to its season-long power-play woes - park Dustin Byfuglien in front of the net and hope for the best. Maurice experimented with his towering blue-liner in the win over Carolina, moving him in front in an attempt to screen the netminder and end the team's struggles with the man advantage. The Jets didn't score on five power-play chances - leaving them 0-for-19 on the season - but Maurice is expected to try it again versus the Lightning.
1. The teams split a pair of meetings last season, with the road team prevailing both times.
2. Stamkos has recorded 24 goals and 17 assists in 28 games against the Winnipeg franchise.
3. Tampa Bay has one of the league's top power-play units, converting 26.9 percent of its chances.
PREDICTION: Lightning 4, Jets 3
Stats and Records