The Tampa Bay Lightning currently lead the NHL with a 50-12-4 record, good for 104 pts in 66 games played. They've been at the top of the standings all year long and are primed to go on a deep run in the playoffs. Despite their winning ways, many still doubt whether or not they can win the Stanley Cup with this core group of players, but they have all of the pieces to get over the hump.
1. Nikita Kucherov’s outburst to become the best points producer in the NHL.
Kucherov has 106 pts so far this season, leading the entire league.
2. The Lightning Power Play is operating at 28.9%, which is the best in the league.
The combination of Kucherov, Steven Stamkos, and Brayden Point has made the power play absolutely lethal.
3. Brayden Point has emerged as a top line center.
Point currently sits with 80 points in 64 games.
4. Andrei Vasilevskiy is tied for 2nd in the league among starters with a 0.931 save percentage.
It appears that the Lightning' starting netminder is ready to get over the hump after being worn down last year before losing in the Conference Final.
5. Tampa is extremely motivated after last year’s seven game defeat to the Washington Capitals in the Eastern Conference Final.
Washington went on to win the 2018 Stanley Cup Final, making the defeat even more painful for the Lightning organization and fanbase.
6. Steven Stamkos is having his best goal scoring season since 2015.
Stamkos is on pace to eclipse his 36 goals in 2015-16.
7. The positive production from rookies Mathieu Joseph and Anthony Cirelli.
Joseph and Cirelli have boosted the Lightning' depth scoring this season which much needed goals.