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POSTED BY: officialsbaseball on 02/10/2019 21:07:15
TAMPA Tyler Graovac Jersey Womens , Fla. — A matchup of early-season conference powers takes place Saturday when the Eastern Conference leading Tampa Bay Lightning host the Western Conference leading Colorado Avalanche at Amalie Arena.The Lightning enter the game winners of five straight and sit four points ahead of the Toronto Maple Leafs atop the conference standings. The Avalanche have won seven of their past eight on the road and sit tied with Nashville on top of the West standings.It will be a matchup of Tampa Bay’s impressive depth up and down the lineup against Colorado’s trio of Mikko Rantanen, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog, which will be back together after being broken up at the end of Thursday’s victory at Florida.Article continues below ...The Avalanche top line has combined for 48 goals and 124 points through 29 games. Rantanen leads the league with 47 points and 35 assists while MacKinnon is second with 44 points.But for the third period against Florida, with the game tied 2-2, Colorado head coach Jared Bednar split up the top line, moving J.T. Compher to that top line and moving Rantanen to the second line. The Avalanche went on to win the game 5-2, with Compher scoring the tie-breaking goal.“Whenever coach puts you out with guys of that caliber it’s exciting,” Compher told NHL.com. “It was a great opportunity for me, and seeing how hard those guys work, they dog pucks all the time. I just tried to get out there to get on the forecheck trying to create turnovers, and we had a real good shift, pinned them in their zone and were able to get a goal.”That type of work ethic, Bednar felt Youth John Tavares Jersey , was not up to par, which prompted the switch to start the third period.“I felt like our top guys were struggling to kind of gain some traction,” Bednar told NHL.com. “They did have their chances, they scored on Mikko’s tip (in the first period) and they were doing some good things, but the regular traction that I expect out of that line wasn’t there. I thought maybe I flip them [and] sometimes you can get a spark, and if I didn’t like it I could just move it back real quick.”Bednar told BSNDenver.com on Friday that the trio would be back together to begin Saturday’s game against the Lightning, while goaltender Semyon Varlamov starts in goal.Tampa Bay, meanwhile, has a deep group of forwards that features five players who have already reached double digits in goal, led by Brayden Point who is tied for the league lead with 21 goals. Linemate Nikita Kucherov is third in league scoring with 43 points.The Lightning also have seven players with at least 20 points and 10 players with at least five goals scored through 30 games.“It’s definitely a strength on our team,” said Lightning goaltender Louis Domingue, who is 9-2 in 11 starts since the loss of No. 1 goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy. “We saw it when some of our best players got injured, someone else jumped in the lineup and did a good job. It’s even guys that aren’t playing right now Authentic Mitchell Marner Jersey , when they come in, they are ready to go, and they do a good job.” WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice wants the Jets to focus on fun, not the magnitude of Sunday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights.The expansion Golden Knights are up 3-1 in the best-of-seven Western Conference final and could eliminate the Jets and reach the Stanley Cup Final with a victory.”These are the best games, always are, when everything is on the line,” Maurice said Saturday. ”Everybody will be at their most excited. You have to find a way, and it shouldn’t be very difficult, to love every minute of it. … This has to be your finest hour. Before the puck drops, I’m not talking about the play, be able to get your mind that this is the most fun game of the year now.”The Jets have accomplished more in the playoffs than the Atlanta Thrashers franchise did before relocating to Manitoba in 2011. They’ve also surpassed the achievements of the original NHL Jets franchise that moved to Arizona in 1996.As the current Winnipeg team eliminated the Minnesota Wild in the first round in five games and then bounced the Predators in a Game 7 in Nashville, fans from across the country have cheered on the only Canadian team left in the championship run.Jets defenseman Ben Chiarot and his teammates have seen the adoration Morgan Rielly Jersey , particularly in Winnipeg with their white-clad crowd inside Bell MTS Place and thousands more outside at ”whiteout” street parties around the rink.Now, though, isn’t the time to let the hopes of hockey fans weigh them down, he said.”I don’t think you can think about that, how many people we have watching us,” Chiarot said.”It’s a little daunting when you think of a whole province, or even the whole country, watching us play. So you just focus on what you do and the guys in the room and that’s all we focus on.”Winnipeg won the first game against the Golden Knights at home.The Jets had an NHL-best home record of 32-7-2 in the regular season and finished with nine straight victories at home. They added four more in the playoffs, but have lost three of their last four games at home.In the last two losses to Vegas, the Jets gave up the first goal. When they did tie it up in both matches, the Golden Knights responded with goals in under a minute to regain their lead.”It’s going to be really important, not only just to score the first, but just to have a good start Womens Nazem Kadri Jersey ,” Jets forward Andrew Copp said. ”We felt like we actually started OK last game, just kind of got in penalty trouble early. That can determine how it looks like you start.”If the Jets can pull out a victory Sunday, Game 6 is Tuesday night in Las Vegas. A Game 7 would be Thursday night in Winnipeg.Maurice wants his players to approach the do-or-die game like their Game 7 victory in Nashville.”I want them to take their experience from Game 6 and 7 and create the environment they created there where they came out with an excitement and smile on their face,” he said. ”Going into Game 7, there’s as much pressure in that game as there was here, right? It’s the exact same game. This one is at home. We’ll need that crowd. They’ve been great for us.”Both teams, all four teams now (left in the playoffs), there’s not quite as much in the tank as there was before. You’re looking to draw on that and go out with an excited smile.”
02/16/2019


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