Tampa Bay Lightning G Andrei Vasilevskiy To Start Against Senators

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy will get the start between the pipes tonight as the Lightning take on the Ottawa Senators.

The Tampa Bay Lightning had a pretty rough night on Thursday night as they finished off their season-opening home stand with a soul-crushing 4-0 loss at the hands of the Colorado Avalanche. Tonight, the Lightning need to shake off the loss and prepare themselves for a new challenge, the Ottawa Senators.

Tonight, the Tampa Bay Lightning are kicking off a rather long road trip. After taking on the Senators tonight, the Lightning will continue to make their way through Canada and then through the New York metropolitan area. Needless to say, the Bolts have a pretty long road ahead of them before they make their way home.

According to Tampa Bay Lightning Beat Writer Bryan Burns, Lightning Head Coach Jon Cooper has confirmed Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy will get the start between the pipes tonight against Ottawa.

Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay Lightning /

Tampa Bay Lightning

Ever since Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop was benched in the second game of the season, people have asked me why the  Lightning were resting Bishop so soon. The thing is, it’s not so much about resting Bishop as it is giving Vasilevskiy an opportunity to play.

Last season, the Tampa Bay Lightning reassigned Andrei Vasilevskiy to the Syracuse Crunch in order to get some games under his belt. While this is all well and good, the simple fact is playing on AHL ice is simply not the same as playing on NHL ice. If Vasy is to be successful, he will need to get some real ice time.

In fact, Lightning fans should probably get used to seeing Andrei Vasilevskiy a little more this season. According to Burns, Coach Cooper’s plan is to give Vasilevskiy the start in at least one game per week. Cooper believes the goaltending has been “outstanding” so and both Bishop and Vasy give the Bolts a chance to win.

Andrei Vasilevskiy put up a fairly solid performance on October 15th when the Tampa Bay Lightning took on the New Jersey Devils. The Bolts went down two goals early, but Vasilevskiy was able to hold strong throughout the remainder of the game, opening the door for the Lightning to come back and emerge victoriously.

Against the Devils on the 15th, Vasilevskiy stopped 32 of 34 shots on goal for a Save Percentage of .941 percent. If Vasilevskiy can prove to perform consistently, the Tampa Bay Lightning will find themselves in a good place heading into the end of the regular season.

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The Tampa Bay Lightning will take the ice at 7:00 p.m. at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa to take on the Ottawa Senators. After the events of Thursday night, there is no doubt the Lightning will be looking to make a rebound and get back on the winning track. You won’t want to miss a minute of the action.