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Canadiens vs. Lightning: Game thread, rosters, lines, and how to watch

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The Canadiens start a swing through Florida as Lightning fight for their playoff lives

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

As the calendar turns to the month that the NHL playoffs will get under way in, there are a few teams still in the hunt for a post-season berth. The competition is at its most fierce in the Atlantic Division. While each of the other three divisions have at least three teams with guaranteed spots, with one week remaining in the regular-season schedule, only the Montreal Canadiens have officially secured their invitation.

The next four teams behind the Habs are separated by just six points, from the Ottawa Senators with 91 to the Tampa Bay Lightning with 85. The Lightning’s task is a bit more difficult now than it was this morning, as the Boston Bruins have leapfrogged the Toronto Maple Leafs to hold the Atlantic’s third seed. The Lightning now need to make up at least four points in their final six games on the team that will eventually claim the second wild-card spot.

It’s not quite “must-win” territory for Tampa Bay, as a loss won’t mathematically eliminate them from post-season play, but with the Carolina Hurricanes just one point behind and riding a 13-game point streak, the Lightning can’t afford to leave too many points on the board on the home stretch.

The Canadiens will be a major obstacle in their path tonight, with scoring starting to come from all lines just in time for the post-season to get going. It should be an entertaining night at Amalie Arena.

Puck Drop is 7:00 PM EDT / 4:00 PM PDT

How to watch

Canada (English): CityTV
Canada (French): TVA Sports
In the Lightning region: SUN
Elsewhere: NHL.tv/NHL Gamecentre Live, NHL Centre Ice

Montreal Canadiens Projected Lines

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Max Pacioretty Philip Danault Alexander Radulov
Paul Byron Tomas Plekanec Brendan Gallagher
Alex Galchenyuk Andrew Shaw Artturi Lehkonen
Dwight King Michael McCarron Andreas Martinsen

Defence

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Andrei Markov Shea Weber
Brandon Davidson Jeff Petry
Nathan Beaulieu Alexei Emelin

Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
Carey Price
Charlie Lindgren

Scratched: Steve Ott, Torrey Mitchell

Injured: Al Montoya (lower body), Nikita Nesterov (undisclosed), Brian Flynn (upper body), Jordie Benn (upper body)

Tampa Bay Lightning Projected Lines

Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Left Wing Centre Right Wing
Ondrej Palat Brayden Point Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn Vladislav Namestnikov Jonathan Drouin
Adam Erne Yanni Gourde Joel Vermin
Gabriel Dumont Greg McKegg J.T. Brown

Defence

Left Defence Right Defence
Left Defence Right Defence
Victor Hedman Jake Dotchin
Anton Stralman Luke Witkowski
Braydon Coburn Andrej Sustr

Goaltenders

Goaltenders
Goaltenders
Andrei Vasilevskiy
Peter Budaj

Injured: Steven Stamkos, Tyler Johnston