Programming note: Sharks-Lightning coverage starts tonight at 4pm with Sharks Pregame Live on CSN California.
Where they stand
Sharks: 29-20-5, 63 points, 3rd Pacific Division
Lightning: 30-21-4, 64 points, 4th Atlantic Division
Sharks: The Sharks skated past Arizona at home on Saturday, 4-1, going 1-0-1 on a brief two-game homestand. Tonight marks the first of a five-game road trip for San Jose, which is 11-2-3 in its last 15 overall.
Lightning: Tampa Bay’s nine-game home winning streak was snapped on Sunday by St. Louis, 2-1. The Lightning have lost three of their last four games, after winning 10 of 11.
Keep an eye on…
Sharks: Matt Tennyson. The Sharks' seventh defenseman has played admirably since Brenden Dillon got hurt, scoring his second goal in the win over Arizona on Saturday. His other goal came against Tampa Bay on Dec. 5. While it still seems like coach Pete DeBoer has a short leash with the 25-year-old, Tennyson’s presence helped the club win just its second of 10 games when missing one of its regular defenders.
Lightning: Steven Stamkos. The Lightning have announced that their most dangerous scorer and pending free agent will not be traded before the deadline, setting up another playoff push for the defending Eastern Conference champs. Stamkos is second on the club in goals (22) and points (42), and will center Ryan Callahan and Alex Killorn to try and spark the Lightning, which will also reunite the “triplets” line.
Tomas Hertl – Joe Thornton – Joe Pavelski
Matt Nieto – Patrick Marleau – Joel Ward
Joonas Donskoi – Logan Couture – Tommy Wingels
Melker Karlsson – Chris Tierney – Dainius Zubrus
Marc-Edouard Vlasic – Justin Braun
Paul Martin – Brent Burns
Dylan DeMelo – Matt Tennyson
Martin Jones (confirmed starter)
Alex Killorn – Steven Stamkos – Ryan Callahan
Ondrej Palat – Tyler Johnson – Nikita Kucherov
Cedric Paquette – Valtteri Filppula – J.T. Brown
Jonathan Marchessault – Brian Boyle – Erik Condra
Victor Hedman – Andrej Sustr
Matt Carle – Anton Stralman
Nikita Nesterov – Slater Koekkoek
Ben Bishop (confirmed starter)
Goals per game: 2.93 (4th)
Goals-against per game: 2.67 (18th)
Power play: 23.0 percent (3rd)
Penalty kill: 80.5 percent (18th)
Goals per game: 2.64 (15th)
Goals-against per game: 2.40 (8th)
Power play: 18.6 percent (16th)
Penalty kill: 82.5 percent (9th)
Sharks: Brenden Dillon (upper body) is out.
Lightning: Joel Vermin (hand surgery) and Jason Garrison (lower body) are out.
On Dec. 5, the Lightning claimed a 4-3 win over the Sharks at SAP Center, with all of San Jose’s goals coming on the power play.
The Sharks were without Marc-Edouard Vlasic for the game, while the Lightning were led by two goals from leading scorer Nikita Kucherov.
Odds and ends
*Marc-Edouard Vlasic has a career-high seven-game point/assist streak (7a), while Joe Thornton has a five-game point streak (3g, 4a).
*The Lightning are 18-9-2 at home, while San Jose is 18-8-2 on the road.
*The Sharks are 26-for-91 on the power play since Dec. 15 (28.6 percent), while the Lightning are 35-for-37 (94.6 percent) on the penalty kill over their last 11 games.
*Nikita Kucherov has at least one point in 20 of his last 24 games (12g, 18a) and leads the Lightning in goals (23) and points (48).
*Matt Carle, drafted by the Sharks in the second round in 2003, will play in his 700th career game tonight.