Tampa Bay Lightning Face A Tough Challenge Against The New York Rangers


The Tampa Bay Lightning face a tough challenge tomorrow night as a familiar foe, the New York Rangers, comes storming into the Amalie Arena.

The Tampa Bay Lightning has faced some pretty tough challenges this season, but the toughest of them all may still be in front of them. Tomorrow night, the Tampa Bay Lightning go head-to-head with a rather familiar foe, the New York Rangers.

This is the first time this season these two Eastern Conference rivals gave come face-to-face. As most of you know, these two teams have quite a history between them. The New York Rangers battled the Tampa Bay Lightning forcing a game seven only to be shut out by the Tampa Bay Lightning. With the Lightning’s game seven win, they would become the Eastern Conference Champions and go on to face the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Before the excitement of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Tampa Bay Lightning faced the New York Rangers three times during the regular season. Within a fifteen day window, from November 17th until December 1st, the Lightning would defeat the Rangers three times completing a season sweep.

Unfortunately, things look much different this season as the Lightning head into their first encounter with the Rangers since the Eastern Conference Finals. Should the New York Rangers emerge victorious tomorrow night against the Lightning, they will tie their franchise record with ten victories in a row. On the other side of the ice, the Tampa Bay Lightning are struggling to find some sort of consistency this season.

The Tampa Bay Lightning is currently 8-9-3 this season, which leaves the Bolts in fifth place in the Atlantic Division. At the beginning of the season, the onus for the Lightning’s struggles seemed to rest on the shoulders of the Lightning’s offense; however, now that the Lightning has managed to find their way to the back of the net much more frequently, it seems as if the number of player injuries has skyrocketed.

As of this morning, the Tampa Bay Lightning currently have five forwards on their injury list. The most recent addition to this list is Tampa Bay Lightning alternate captain Ryan Callahan who has been listed as Day-To-Day with a Lower Body Injury. Also on the injured list is centers Tyler Johnson (Upper Body Injury) and Cedric Paquette (Undisclosed Injury), alongside left wings Ondrej Palat (Lower Body Injury) and Jonathan Drouin (Undisclosed Injury).

The Tampa Bay Lightning has not announced whether it will be Ben Bishop or Andrei Vasilevskiy defending the pipes against the Rangers tomorrow night. On the other side of the ice, it is expected that Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist will be getting the start for the Rangers.

There is no denying the Lightning have all of the tools they need to get the job done against the Rangers. The Bolts are certainly plagued by injuries at the moment, but if they can manage to maintain focus on the task at hand, they should have no issues doing what they did all last season, bringing the two points against the Rangers. It is going to be a tough challenge, but it is not one the Tampa Bay Lightning can’t overcome.

The puck is scheduled to drop at 7:30 p.m. tomorrow night at the Amalie Arena. Make sure to stay connected right here with Bolts By The Bay as we bring you all the latest Tampa Bay Lightning news, updates, commentary, and more.