Final SO

Series (Game 5 of 6)

Tampa Bay leads 6-0

Game 1: Saturday, October 9th
Game 2: Friday, October 22nd
Game 3: Wednesday, December 15th
Game 4: Sunday, December 26th
Game 5: Thursday, January 20th
Game 6: Sunday, January 23rd

Lightning 3

(28-15-5, 61 pts)

Jets 2

(23-18-8, 54 pts)

7:00 PM ET, January 20, 2011

Philips Arena, Atlanta, Georgia

1 2 3 SO T
TB 1 0 1 13
WPG 1 1 0 02

S. Stamkos (Lightning - C): Goals: 2, Assists: 0

D. Moore (Lightning - C): Goals: 0, Assists: 0

N. Bergfors (Jets - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Lightning-Thrashers Preview


The Atlanta Thrashers were two minutes from a season-high losing streak before a late rally led to a victory.

Ending their skid against a division rival may prove to be just as difficult.

Atlanta looks to halt a nine-game slide against the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning in a Southeast Division matchup Thursday night.

Atlanta was outscored 24-9 during a string of four losses over the last two weeks and gave up nine goals to Toronto on Jan. 7 -- its most since a 9-0 defeat to Carolina on Nov. 12, 2005.

The Thrashers stopped the slide Monday with a 3-2 shootout win over Florida as they put together a furious late comeback. Bryan Little scored with 1:58 remaining in the third, assisted on Chris Thorburn's tally 44 seconds later and scored in the shootout to help Atlanta (23-18-7) to its fourth win in its last 13.

"We knew we had the team to come back in these type of situations and we just stick with it and we finally got a break at the end," Little said. "Once we got that one goal, we thought we'd get another one."

Ondrej Pavelec made 38 saves after going 0-3-1 with a 5.48 goals-against average during Atlanta's slide. Leading scorer Dustin Byfuglien, however, was held without a point for the sixth straight game.

The Thrashers played similarly exciting contests in the two most recent matchups with the Lightning this season, losing 2-1 in a shootout Dec. 15 and 3-2 in overtime Dec. 26. Pavelec took the loss in each and is 0-2-3 with a 2.75 GAA in his last five starts against the Lightning.

Vincent Lecavalier's second goal of the game came in OT in the teams' last matchup, but he's scored only two goals since for Tampa Bay (27-15-5). Four of his eight goals this season have come against Atlanta.

Steven Stamkos scored for the third straight game Tuesday, netting a pair of goals in the Lightning's 3-2 shootout win over Columbus. First-place Tampa Bay seemed sluggish early after a two-day break from practice, but recovered to avoid a third straight loss.

The Lightning had dropped four of six.

"Had a little bit of a slow start, but we battled through," Stamkos said. "It wasn't the prettiest game, but we'll take one to snap out of that little funk. We don't let it go past two games."

Stamkos, the NHL leader with 35 goals, has six in the four games against the Thrashers this season and recorded a hat trick in a 5-2 win Oct. 22. He scored twice in a 5-3 victory Oct. 9 and added another in the last meeting. Stamkos has 13 goals and 10 assists -- his highest totals against any club -- in 16 career games versus Atlanta.

Dwayne Roloson, who made 28 saves Tuesday, is 7-0-1 with one tie and a 2.99 GAA against the Thrashers.

Atlanta has scored two or fewer goals in six of the last nine games against Tampa Bay.