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Lightning Vs. Blue Jackets: Bolts Hope To Build Off Success, Continue Intensity

The Tampa Bay Lighting (13-16-2) face the Columbus Blue Jackets (9-18-4) tonight at 7:00pm EST.

After weeks of lackluster performances, the Tampa Bay Lightning finally showed some signs of life this past week. Although they still sit in fourth place in the Southeast Division (28 points), their performance against the Calgary Flames on Thursday night was encouraging.

The Bolts played some of their most aggressive hockey of the season in the second period, scoring three goals and outshooting the Flames 18-5, and they slammed the door closed on the game 30 seconds into overtime. The Lightning still have some large questions facing their team -- What to do with Dwayne Roloson? When will St. Louis return? How do you replace Mattias Ohlund? -- but their fortunes should improve if they can continue to play at the level they displayed against Calgary.

Tonight's game should provide the Bolts with a chance to keep those good vibes rolling. The Columbus Blue Jackets are currently one of the worst team in the NHL; they have a mere 22 points (last in the NHL) through 31 games, and their -28 goal differential is second worst behind only the Carolina Hurricanes. Their defense has been as nearly porous as the Bolts' -- 102 GA compared with the Lightnings' 105 GA -- so Tampa Bay's offense should (hopefully) be able to take advantage.

Time: 7:00pm EST
Location: Nationwide Arena, Columbus, OH
Coverage: SUN (HD),FS-O (HD)

To join in the conversation about this game, drop by SB Nation's blog on the Lightning, Raw Charge.

Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.