Tampa Bay hosts Vancouver after Kucherov’s 3-goal game
Vancouver Canucks (16-16-3, seventh in the Pacific) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (24-9-5, second in the Atlantic)
Tampa, Florida; Thursday, 7 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: Tampa Bay hosts the Vancouver Canucks after Nikita Kucherov scored three goals in the Lightning’s 6-1 win over the Sabres.
The Lightning have gone 12-4-3 in home games. Tampa Bay is 10th in the league averaging 5.7 assists per game, led by Kucherov with 0.8.
The Canucks are 8-9-2 on the road. Vancouver averages 8.9 penalty minutes per game, the eighth-most in the Western Conference. Oliver Ekman-Larsson leads the team serving 32 total minutes.
The matchup Thursday is the first meeting this season between the two teams.
TOP PERFORMERS: Steven Stamkos leads the Lightning with 44 points, scoring 17 goals and collecting 27 assists. Ondrej Palat has six goals and six assists over the last 10 games for Tampa Bay.
J.T. Miller leads the Canucks with 36 points, scoring 11 goals and registering 25 assists. Brock Boeser has five goals and two assists over the last 10 games for Vancouver.
LAST 10 GAMES: Lightning: 6-3-1, averaging 3.6 goals, 6.7 assists, 4.3 penalties and 11.9 penalty minutes while giving up 3.2 goals per game with an .884 save percentage.
Canucks: 8-1-1, averaging 2.9 goals, 4.7 assists, 2.8 penalties and 6.5 penalty minutes while allowing 1.9 goals per game with a .938 save percentage.
INJURIES: Lightning: Ryan McDonagh: day to day (lower body).
Canucks: Phillip Di Giuseppe: out (covid-19), Justin Dowling: out (covid-19), Alex Chiasson: out (health protocols).