Lowly Lightning seek relief against Thrashers

Tampa Bay (7-15-9) at Atlanta (10-17-4), 7:00 p.m. EST

ATLANTA (Ticker) — The Tampa Bay Lightning have had difficulty
winning all season long. Luckily for them, the Atlanta
Thrashers are experiencing similar troubles on their home ice.

Seeking their third victory in 19 contests, the Lightning hope
to vanquish the lowly Thrashers in a meeting between Southeast
Division foes on Saturday.

Atlanta has lost seven straight at home since beating the
Carolina Hurricanes, 3-2, on November 14. This is the
Thrashers’ longest home losing streak since dropping a
franchise-worst nine in a row in 1999-00.

They have allowed four goals or more in three of their last four
games, including a 6-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on

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On Friday, Atlanta assigned 21-year-old netminder Ondrej Pavelec
to Chicago of the American Hockey League. That means Johan
Hedberg, who is 1-2-1 with a 5.13 goals-against average in his
last five games against the Lightning, will likely start in

Hedberg has the task of facing a lifeless offense – the
Lightning have scored only 69 goals this season, second-worst in
the NHL.

Tampa Bay is 2-8-5 under interim head coach Rick Tocchet.