The defending Eastern Conference champion Lightning looked nothing like a Stanley Cup contender in the first few weeks of the 2011-2012 NHL season, but after stumbling out of the gates, Tampa Bay has quickly regained its form to win its previous three games. Now, as the Lightning get set to play their 10th game of the year Thursday night in Nashville against the Predators, the Lightning find themselves above .500 (4-3-2) and on the trails of the Florida Panthers in the Southeast Division.
Tampa's Thursday night opponent, Nashville, is 3-4-1 and coming off a home loss on Tuesday to San Jose. The Predators aim to continue their good fortune against Tampa goal tender Mathieu Garon, who's stellar play has been a big catalyst for the Lightning's winning streak. Garcon has a personal eight game losing streak against Nashville. Coach Guy Bouche looks like he'll stick with Garon until given reason not to. Dwayne Roloson was expected to be in net for Tampa Bay after the fine work he did in last year's playoffs, but Bouche yanked Roloson three games ago, and the Lightning have yet to lose since.
The puck drops in Nashville at 8 pm EST and can be seen on Sun Sports Tampa Bay.