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Game 1 Preview: The Jackets need to bring the thunder against Tampa Bay Lightning

A rematch made in heaven.

NHL: Tampa Bay Lightning at Columbus Blue Jackets Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Monday, August 11, 2020 - 3:00 EST
Scotiabank Arena - Toronto, Ontario
TV: Fox Sports Ohio & NBCSN; Radio: 97.1 FM
Opponent’s Blog: Raw Charge

Columbus Blue Jackets (33-22-15, 81 points, 6th Metro, 9th East)


Tampa Bay Lightning (43-21-6, 92 points, 2nd Atlantic, 2nd East)

After a whiplash-inducing series against the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Jackets had less than 48 hours to regroup and face a familiar foe, who has the chip of all chips on their shoulders right now - good ol’ Tampa Bay Lightning.

Their last meetup in a playoff series was unforgettable for the Blue Jackets - a tidy 4-game sweep of a team projected by many to win the Stanley Cup, just last season. Their last playoff series was also unforgettable for the Lightning, in a different way; as Raw Charge put it, “The Lightning had to wear it all season long. No matter how well they did during the regular season, they were reminded about their postseason disaster. What better way to start the play-offs than facing their nemesis?”

That’s cute, that we’re their nemesis. Tampa Bay wasn’t the first and won’t be the last team to fall victim to underestimating the Blue Jackets. As Michael Scott said in The Office, “Maybe next time, you will estimate me.”

We’ll see though, because a July 30 Raw Charge article, titled “Why the Lightning want to play the Blue Jackets in the first round,” cites the familiar tropes that this new CBJ team is missing Artemi Panarin, Sergei Bobrovsky, Matt Duchene, yada yada yada. Those guys are going to be watching the remainder of the playoffs from their couches at home, as will the Toronto Maple Leafs.

In any case, Tampa Bay will now be back with a vengeance, looking to atone for their atrocious performance in last year’s playoffs.

The Jackets will have to switch gears, to a degree - they will still be facing a high-powered offense, but will have a stronger defense to break through.

Player to Watch

Joonas Korpisalo. With Elvis injured, Joonas will need to continue to step up and play the best games of his life - with no fallback option. Fortunately, he’s coming off a great week of hockey; he just needs to keep it up.

Also, obviously, Liam Foudy! He was a game changer on Sunday night and could be a series changer this upcoming week. Fingers crossed for more goals out of him.

Season Series

2/10/20 TBL 2 @ CBJ 1

8/11/20 CBJ @ TBL 3:00 EST
8/13/20 CBJ @ TBL 3:00 EST
8/15/20 TBL @ CBJ 7:30 EST
8/17/20 TBL @ CBJ 3:00 EST

Playoff Stats

Tampa Bay Columbus
2.00 (16) GPG 2.40 (14)
2.67 (12) GAPG 2.00 (6)
40% (1) PP% 0.00% (24)
90.9% (5) PK% 84.6% (10)
56.5% (2) 5v5 Shot Attempt % 47.1% (18)
55.8% (3) 5v5 Unblocked shot attempt % 47.5% (17)
6.2 (14) 5v5 Shot % 7.6 (12)
.912 (15) 5v5 Save % .980 (2)
Tyler Johnson 2 G Leader Pierre-Luc Dubois, 3
Alex Killorn, Brayden Point, 2 A Leader Cam Atkinson, David Savard, 3
Alex Killorn, Brayden Point, Tyler Johnson, 3 P Leader Cam Atkinson, 5
Blake Coleman, 11 PIM Leader Nick Foligno, 8

Projected Lineups

Columbus Blue Jackets
Alexandre Texier Pierre-Luc Dubois Cam Atkinson
Gustav Nyquist Boone Jenner Nick Foligno
Liam Foudy Riley Nash Oliver BJORKSTRAND
Eric Robinson Alexander Wennberg Nathan Gerbe
Zach Werenski Seth Jones
Vladislav Gavrikov David Savard
Ryan Murray Dean Kukan
Joonas Korpisalo
Matiss Kivlenieks
Tampa Bay Lightning
Ondrej Palat Brayden Point Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn Anthony Cirelli Tyler Johnson
Barclay Goodrow Yanni Gourde Blake Coleman
Patrick Maroon Mitchell Stephens Cedric Paquette
Victor Hedman Zach Bogosian
Ryan McDonagh Erik Cernak
Mikhail Sergachev Kevin Shattenkirk
Andrei Vasilevskiy
Curtis McElhinney