Skip to content

NHL on NBCSN: Stamkos, Crosby collide in Penguins-Lightning match

Mar 4, 2013, 8:03 AM EST

Steven Stamkos #91 of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins take a face-off at Consol Energy Center on November 12, 2010 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
(November 11, 2010 - Source: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images North America) Getty Images

NBCSN’s ongoing coverage of the 2013 campaign will continue tonight when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the Tampa Bay Lightning at the Consol Energy Center at 7:30 p.m. ET.

If there’s one thing these two teams have excelled at this season, it’s finding the back of the net. Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh rank first and second respectively in goals per game and only one other team, the Anaheim Ducks, even comes close to matching these two offensive titans.

Of course, it helps that Pittsburgh and Tampa Bay also have the top two offensive threats in the league.

Sidney Crosby, with his concussion problems behind him, has only been held off the scoresheet in five of Pittsburgh’s 22 games. He leads the league in points with 34 and has an incredible 27 points in his last 15 contests.

Steven Stamkos is slightly behind Crosby in total points, but there has been no goal scorer more effective than Stamkos this season. The 23-year-old forward has found the back of the net in seven of his last eight games and leads the league with 15 goals in just 21 contests. If this were a full 82-game campaign, then that pace would put Stamkos just shy of his second straight 60-goal campaign.

While Stamkos and Crosby can be counted as elites, only one of their respective teams deserves the same level of praise. The Pittsburgh Penguins rank second in the Eastern Conference while the Tampa Bay Lightning hold the 13th seed with a 9-11-1 record.

After goaltending issues sunk Tampa Bay last season, Lightning GM Steve Yzerman made a major effort to address that need over the summer. The centerpiece of those efforts was his acquisition of Anders Lindback from the Nashville Predators.

24-year-old Lindback had been a solid backup for the Predators for a couple years and seemed ready to take the next step. However, so far he’s struggled and appears to have at least temporarily lost the starting gig to Mathieu Garon, who will make his fourth straight start tonight, according to the Tampa Bay Times’ Damian Cristodero.

Unfortunately for the Lightning, Garon has a 1-4-0 record with a 4.28 GAA in six career games against the Penguins.

Tampa Bay is hungry to end their four-game losing streak, but Pittsburgh isn’t a team that can be easily overwhelmed through offensive might alone. Garon and the Lightning’s defense will need to step up to the daunting task of trying to contain Crosby and the Penguins.

Probable goaltenders: TBL – Garon (2-7-0, 2.86 GAA, .911 SV%) | PIT – Marc-Andre Fleury (10-5-0, 2.40 GAA, .912 SV%)

Top scorers: TBL – Stamkos (15-17-32, 21 GP) | PIT – Crosby (10-24-34, 22 GP)

Notable Injuries:
Tampa Bay – Forwards: Benoit Pouliot (upper body), Ryan Malone (lower body) Defensemen: Mattias Ohlund (knee), Sami Salo (lower body)
Pittsburgh – Forwards: Evgeni Malkin (concussion) Defensemen: Paul Martin (lower body)

Latest Posts
  1. Woman pleads guilty to theft of Nyquist’s first-goal puck

    Nov 21, 2014, 11:49 AM EST

    Detroit Red Wings v Chicago Blackhawks Getty Images

    As part of a rental storage facility scheme.

  2. ‘Hawks put Sharp on LTIR, recall ’11 first-rounder Danault

    Nov 21, 2014, 11:10 AM EST

    Patrick Sharp Patrick Sharp

    Bit of a Rockford influence on the roster right now.

  3. Habs to honor ex-captain Koivu on Dec. 18

    Nov 21, 2014, 10:43 AM EST

    Montreal Canadiens v Philadelphia Flyers Getty Images

    He, along with Jean Beliveau, are the longest-tenured captains in franchise history.

  4. Dallas signs Jason Spezza to four-year, $30 million extension

    Nov 21, 2014, 10:21 AM EST

    Jason Spezza AP

    That’s a marginally higher cap hit than Bobby Ryan and David Krejci will get in 2015-16.

  5. Johnston wants to keep Dupuis ‘very involved’

    Nov 21, 2014, 9:56 AM EST

    Pascal Dupuis Getty Images

    They’ll talk about it more next week.

  6. Tavares on production: ‘You make those sacrifices to win’

    Nov 21, 2014, 8:58 AM EST

    John Tavares Getty Images

    He’s been great offensively, but he isn’t one of the league’s scoring leaders.

  7. PHT Morning Skate: (Video) Man sleeps through Zamboni ride

    Nov 21, 2014, 8:00 AM EST

    Zamboni ride

    We also got footage of the Oilers accidentally playing shorthanded.

  8. Ducks’ Kesler on booing ‘Does it hurt? Yeah’

    Nov 21, 2014, 2:30 AM EST

    Ryan Kesler Ryan Kesler

    Former Canucks first rounder made his return to Vancouver Thursday.

  9. Leafs snap skid with 5-2 win over Lightning

    Nov 21, 2014, 12:30 AM EST

    Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Buffalo Sabres Getty Images

    Were out-scored 15-4 in two losses.

  10. Video: Canucks’ Hamhuis suffers right leg injury (Updated)

    Nov 20, 2014, 10:29 PM EST

    Dan Hamhuis Getty Images

    Team is calling it a lower body injury. He will not return.

  11. Video: Canucks pay tribute to Kesler

    Nov 20, 2014, 10:26 PM EST

    Anaheim Ducks v Los Angeles Kings Getty Images

    He spent 10 seasons in Vancouver.

Featured video

Coaches in and out of the hot seat

Sign up for Fantasy hockey

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. V. Hedman (2725)
  2. P. Sharp (2266)
  3. P. Datsyuk (2088)
  4. P. Dupuis (2085)
  5. J. Harding (1901)
  1. T. Hall (1712)
  2. S. Crosby (1689)
  3. C. Perry (1689)
  4. B. Dubinsky (1678)
  5. Z. Chara (1578)