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Lightning at Leafs: Phil Kessel's Debut

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Kessel Jersey, courtesy of <a href="http://twitter.com/leafsfaninbigd">LeafsFanInBigD</a>
Kessel Jersey, courtesy of LeafsFanInBigD

The Tampa Bay Lightning (4-4-4) bring second season scoring sensation Steven Stamkos (12GP 11G 5A 16Pts) and second selection overall Victor Hedman to the ACC tonight. The Lightning have lost their last two, having been soundly thumped last night by the Flyers 6-2. Oddly enough, Vinny Lecavalier is having a rough go of it right now which means tonight is a good night for him to break out of his slump.

Ordinarily this is the kind of game I don't watch. a Southeast division opponent at the ACC on a Tuesday night. The Leafs always get slaughtered in these games to the tune of 7-0 or so. The Leafs have an ace up their sleeve though: tonight is the debut of Phil Kessel.

I'm not a maniac, I know Phil Kessel probably won't score tonight but seeing him streak up and down the ice is going to make a lot of Leafs fans feel a lot better about things. I don't need him to score, I just need him to look sufficiently dangerous out there to give the rest of the Leafs a little swagger.

Tonight's lines courtesy of Jonas Siegel's Eat Sleep Leafs blog:

Forwards
Blake - Stajan - Kessel
Ponikarovsky - Grabovski - Kulemin
Hagman - Mitchell - Stempniak
Primeau - Wallin - Orr

Defense
Kaberle - Komisarek
Beauchemin - White
Exelby - Schenn

Goalie
Gustavsson

For Lightning coverage go check out SBNation's Raw Charge, don't forget your SPG picks and check back here at 7:00 for the Game Day Open Thread.