By Jake Ricker
The Tampa Bay Lightning will take on the Colorado Avalanche tonight in their fourth game of the season. The Lightning will be looking to bounce back after a tough loss to the Panthers by a score of 4-1. Meanwhile, the Avalanche will be looking to end their three-game losing streak. Let take a look at how these two teams stack up and what they need to do to come out on top.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Keys to the game
Convert on the Power Play
Foot on the gas
Despite being 2-2, The Lightning have not led in one of their games this season. Getting on the board first would be a huge confidence boost for the team. The Lighting will also be looking to improve on their 0-6 performance on the power play in their last game. The Bolts have been working on the power play all week so expect some different looks in tonight's game.
The Bolts will still be without Nikita Kucherov for the foreseeable future. After Picking up ABB back on waivers, he will be traveling with the team to help fill that hole left by Kuch. However, head coach Jon Cooper said that ABB will not be playing tonight as he only just got back to Tampa late last night. This means both Taylor Raddysh and Boris Katchouk will be in the lineup tonight.
Both of these teams have underperformed to start the season but if the Lightning can get contributions from their rookies, improve on the power play and get another great performance from Vasy, look for them to pick up their first home win of the season.
Keys to the game
Stay out of the box
Hold the blue line
The Avalanche have not had the start to the season that they wanted. Tonight they will face a Lightning team that has also seen their fair share of issues. The Lightning have not scored first all season, and Colorado will look to continue that.
This will be Mackinnon's second game back after being on the COVID-19 list, so expect him to continue to improve as he gets back into a regular game flow. The Avalanche will be dealing with a few other minor injuries but will have a pretty healthy lineup tonight.
The Bolts have also struggled entering the offensive zone, so if Colorado is able to disrupt them entering the zone again, it should lead to some great opportunities for Colorado.
Two great teams on paper, trying to get back on track after having disappointing starts to the season. We should be in for a great matchup tonight that we would not be surprised to see come down to the wire. Both teams will need to be on their A game if they want to come away with a win.
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