Lightning Take On Pittsburg in Season Opener.



By Jake Ricker


The Tampa Bay Lightning will take on the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight for their season opener tonight at 7:30. Tonight's game will air on ESPN as the NHL starts their new TV deal; the Bolts will also unveil their 2021 Stanley Cup Champions banner after winning back-to-back cups. Let's take a look at both these teams and how they stack up.


Tampa Bay Lightning


Line projections

Palat-Point-Kucherov

Killorn-Cirelli-Stamkos

Joseph-Colton-Perry

Maroon-Bellemare-Raddysh


Hedman-Rutta

McDonagh-Cernak

Sergachev-Bogosian


Vasy


Keys to the game

  • Play Fast

  • Stay out of the box

  • Use Fan energy

Amalie Arena will be rocking tonight without question once that banner is lifted to the rafters. The Bolts will be able to feed off that energy and will hopefully get off to a fast start.

This is not last year's team either, despite still having their main core of players. Perry, Bellmare, and Raddysh will all have some big roles to fill but should be up to the task.


One thing to keep an eye on for tonight is how Cooper uses his lines tonight. With the Bolts having a lot of new players, it may take some time to build chemistry, and the lines you see at puck drop may not be the ones we see at the end of the game.


Pittsburg Penguins


Line Projections

Heinen-Carter-Rust

Zucker-Rodrigues-Kapanen

McGinn-Blueger-Simon

O'Connor-Boyle-Lafferty


Dumoulin-Letang

Pettersson-Marino

Friedman-Ruhwedel


Jarry


Keys to the game

  • Take away the crowd

  • Stay out of the box

  • Get traffic in front of the net

The Penguins will be missing a few key starters tonight, including their captain Sidney Crosby. This will make things much more difficult for the Penguins, so they Will need some of their bottom six players to step up. As mentioned earlier, Amalie should be loud tonight, especially early on, so if the Penguins can silence that crowd quickly, things will be a lot easier down the stretch.


The tallest task for the penguins might be trying to solve Vasilevskiy, who has become of the best goaltenders to ever play the game. They will need to get some traffic in front of the net if they want a chance at beating him.


Overview

Hockey is back! Opening night, banner raising ceremony, full stadiums... it will be a fantastic night for hockey. There will be lots of momentum up for grabs in this game, and whoever is able to take it early just might be the ones to come out on top. The Lightning are the better team on paper, but with a lot of new faces on the team, it might take some time to build some chemistry. Remember, this is just 1 of 82, but enjoy this one, Bolts fans.


Be sure to follow us on Twitter @BoltReport_TB for live coverage of tonights game.






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