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Ben Bishop making third straight start

Ben Bishop will start his third straight game tonight against the Canucks.

AP photo

Ben Bishop will start his third straight game tonight against the Canucks.



Lightning goalie Ben Bishop will start a third straight game for the first time this season.

It's well-deserved, considering how Bishop performed in back-to-back games over the weekend, allowing a combined two goals. He was a big reason the Lightning snapped a four-game losing streak, taking three of four points over the weekend.

"We need someone to help turn this around for us, and I truly believe we really made a conscious effort to play in our own end," coach Jon Cooper said. "But ultimately somebody has to make those big saves for you and Bish has made them.

"Hopefully he's kind of finding his groove which we've been used to seeing in the three years he's been here."

Backup Andrei Vasilevskiy's last start came a week ago in St. Louis, when he was pulled early in the second period after allowing four goals. Vasilevskiy said he was "unlucky" in that game, and understands Cooper riding the hot hand in Bishop.

"I think one start a week is enough for a backup to feel ready," Vasilevskiy said. "Bish will get more starts because he's our starter. Nothing I can do. When I get next start, I have to be ready."

More from morning skate: While RW Jonathan Drouin (undisclosed) and D Jason Garrison (lower body) are expected to return to the lineup RW Ryan Callahan will not. Callahan will miss his fifth straight game, his surgically-repaired right hip having nagged him. He didn't even participate in the morning skate. "We need him in our lineup," Cooper said. "I just feel for him, how much he wants to play. It's killing him.".. The Lightning will go with six defensemen tonight, as recently recalled Luke Witkowski will slot in. Nikita Nesterov and Slater Koekkoek will be scratched. "He's a gamer," Cooper said. "One of the things on the back end, we've got some talented players back there, but need to be a little bit harder and that's what he brings. He's one of those guys the other team knows when he's on the ice, because he will make you pay physically. He's done nothing for us to pull him out of the lineup and we're not gonna." Rookie forward Brayden Point said it'll be pretty cool to play Vancouver tonight. Though he grew up in Calgary, he was a Canucks fan, specifically Markus Naslund. Lines remained the same: Vermin-Johnson-Palat/Killorn-Namestnikov-Kucherov/Point-Filppula-Drouin/Boyle-Paquette-Brown.



[Last modified: Thursday, December 8, 2016 12:52pm]


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