The Tampa Bay Lightning are on fire right now. They are on fire, as in the 18-1-1 since November 19th kind of fire. They currently have 66 points and are on top of the Atlantic division, the Eastern Conference, and the entire NHL. As of right now, nothing can stop the Lightning. So how have they done it?
For starters, it has been due to Nikita Kucherov's play. If you don't know who he is, he is the right winger for Tampa Bay and he leads the league in points (69). He was on an 11-game point streak as of Monday and has scored on 17.2% of his shots, 2.7% up from his career average of 14.5%. Kucherov also has three game-winning goals, a testament to how clutch he has been this season.
You should also know about Steven Stamkos (23 goals and assists each), Brayden Point (24 goals and 30 assists), and Tyler Johnson (18 goals and 13 assists). They're all centers, displaying Tampa Bay's depth at the position. The trio also display a balanced scoring attack, with Kucherov being a good distributor.
In fact, Tampa Bay's attack has been deadly to the point of leading the league in goals per game (4.17 per game). They also score on 30.5% of their power plays, tops in the NHL, and get off 33.7 shots per game, good for fifth in the NHL.
Can Tampa Bay's strong special teams and offensive onslaught propel them to their second Stanley Cup in franchise history? It's possible, but they'll have to keep caution of a hot Pittsburgh Penguins team that has won eight straight. They should also keep an eye on the New York Islanders, who have won five straight. Both teams are potential playoff opponents for the Lightning and could cause trouble (Pittsburgh is the more likely team of the two to cause trouble). Anyway, Lightning fans are hoping to catch 'lightning in a bottle' in the form of the Stanley Cup this summer.
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