Two teams that got off to hot starts, only to recently fall on hard times, meet tonight in Anaheim when the Ducks host the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The Ducks: Winless in five, including Wednesday’s 4-3 overtime loss at home to the Devils. “We’re not playing great hockey right now,” said d-man Ben Lovejoy. “We want to be an elite team in this league, and we’re not playing like it.”
The Lightning: Three straight losses by a combined score of 16-6. And no Steven Stamkos to rescue them. “Things had been going our way for a long time this year to start the season,” said head coach Jon Cooper. “And now not so much.”
For now, both teams remain comfortably in a playoff position; however, there’s reason to wonder how long that will last. The Lightning won’t have Stamkos back for a while, and teams like the Rangers and Flyers have started to find their footing in the Eastern Conference. The Ducks, meanwhile, have a pretty tough slate of games on the horizon, as you can see:
Related: ‘It’s not panic time’ for Lightning