Preview -- Box Score -- AP Recap -- Highlights
Despite appearances in the box score, this game had vast stretches of uninspired and downright fumbling play save for a few individual efforts and a two-minutes hate on Ilya Bryzgalov's club record shutout streak late in the third.  Making it look good in the papers will not undo what was done to the eyes though.

The Flyers got on the board first when sniper dangler legend Zac Rinaldo (Couturier, Grossmann) chipped the puck into the corner to Evgeni Nabokov's right, retrieved it and floated a bad angle, goal line shot for a very soft goal.

From there, the Islanders could do no right.

Scoring chances became scarce (despite a heavy shot disparity in the Isles favor...most were non-threatening) and the Flyers dictated the pace the rest of the way until late in the third.

Claude Giroux (Jagr, Hartnell) would extend the Flyers lead off of some great work by crafty old veteran Jaromir Jagr who outmuscled Mark Streit in the left corner and found Giroux very lonely in the slot.  Dylan Reese seemed to be caught in no-man's land on the play, but the key was Jagr winning the puck battle.

Matt Martin did what he could to spark the team hitting everyone in sight and gaining a pretty nice decision on Wayne Simmonds in an early second period fight after Simonds took exception to a hit on a teammate.  Hockeyfights.com hasn't updated in a few days, but here is the link to the fight log for when it does. Unfortunately, the spark didn't take.

Scott Hartnell (Timonen, Giroux) gave the Flyers the usually worst/unsafe lead in hockey (3-0) at 7:02 of the second after Andrew MacDonald got caught pinching.  Giroux poked the puck up to Amac's vacated area and Hartnell was able to elude Travis Hamonic rushing over to cover and beat Nabokov with high glove wrist shot.

The Islanders would go on to squander  late period back to back power plays and take the deficit late into the third.  At 13:30, Frans Nielsen won an offensive zone faceoff back to Reeese who crossed to Streit.  Streit fired wide of the net, but Michael Grabner was able to get some wood graphite on it and poke it past Bryzgalov ending his shutout streak at 249:43 or, 69:43 minutes longer than all Islanders goaltenders combined on the season.  (Look at these last 6 games)

The Islanders struck again quickly (at 14:05) when John Tavares (Streit) stood his ground at the top of the crease to bang home a wonderful Mark Streit effort.  Streit got the puck at the point, put a spin move on a defender and came down the boards to Bryzgalov's left.  He faked inside and toe dragged around a second, then bull rushed toward the net, pulled up, drew the defense, took a hit, and dished a perfect pass.  A truly beautiful play on a night full of ugly.

The Isles continued to rally, but it was too little, too late.  This is a season of can't get it right.  Can't hold a lead, can't completely come back from a deficit.  Goaltending good, offense dead, defense great, goaltending bad, or any combination of good/bad by one position or another.  You name it, the bad has won out.  The shame of it is that in those two minutes tonight, they were fun, exciting, and gave you hope...they just can't keep it going for long enough stretches yet.  Let's hope they can develop that.

Noticings:

  • According to the broadcast, JT91 was on the ice for the entire last 2:18 of the third tonight.  I can appreciate the competitive nature of the kid, really I can, but let's not get him hurt here.  Isn't that why Jack called a timeout against the Red Wings?  The playoff dream is pretty well over, don't risk injury to ruin draft status.
  • Bright note on JT, he has a four game point streak and cracked 70 points on the season. The last Islander to do so was Alexei Yashin in 2001-2002.
  • Strange report; some on twitter have noted that JT91 took the clipboard from the coaches on the bench and diagrammed the last second faceoff set play during the Islanders timeout.  I'm not sure if that's a sign of hockey smarts and leadership by the kid, or an indictment of the coaching staff.
  • Curmudgeon referee Stephane Auger took an errant Andrew MacDonald stick to the face which bloodied him and sent him off for repairs, but he would return to the game later.
  • Capuano face tells you just about all you need to know about tonight's game.
  • It's beginning to look a lot like draft-mas. (If you say that like the Christmas carol, it helps.)
 
Tags: News

Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk is among the team's top shot-takers. (Kim Klement)
Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk is among the team's top shot-takers. (Kim Klement)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter: How fitting that, on a night when the Islanders chose to honor all former and current members of the military, even those who wear collars and run on four legs, veteran Johnny Boychuk -- one of the team's most visible supporters of the armed forces -- stood out once again.

The 33-year old defenseman from Edmonton, now in his ninth NHL season and fourth with the Islanders, was a bit of a late-bloomer, not breaking into the league in a full-time capacity until he was 26, playing 51 games with the Bruins.

Before the start of the 2014-15 season, then-Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli needed to dump some cash to help out an inflating salary cap situation. Enter Islanders GM Garth Snow, who acquired the veteran defenseman at a time when his team needed one in the worst way, for two second-round picks and a conditional third rounder...

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Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)

First Period

  • 16:21 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Nick Leddy, Andrew Ladd
  • 16:57 NYI Cal Clutterbuck; Unassisted
  • 17:30 CAR Elias Lindholm; Assists: Sebastian Aho, Teuvo Teravainen
  • 19:31 NYI Nick Leddy; Assists: Anders Lee, Josh Bailey 

Second Period

  • 2:54 CAR Noah Hanifin; Assists: Jeff Skinner, Jordan Staal
  • 11:19 CAR  Derek Ryan; Assists: Brett Pesce, Brook McGinn
  • 19:08 CAR Sebastian Aho; Assists: Jordan Staal, Teuvo Teravainen

Third Period

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Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)

NEW YORK -- The NHL season is not even a quarter complete, which should mean it's far too early to wonder about playoff implications of a particular game.

But all norms go out the window in the Metropolitan Division, which the Carolina Hurricanes and the host New York Islanders will both have postseason seeding at least somewhere in their minds when they meet Thursday night at Barclays Center.

The game Thursday will end a mini-break for the Islanders, who haven't played since Saturday, when they snapped a two-game losing streak by beating the host St. Louis Blues 5-2. The Hurricanes won for the third time in four games Monday, when they scored four unanswered goals in the third period of a 5-1 victory over the visiting Dallas Stars.

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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Boston Bruins at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss (1) during the first period against the Boston Bruins at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso)

Thomas Greiss will be in goal on Thursday night for the Islanders against the Hurricanes, head coach Doug Weight said.

Josh Ho-Sang, whose recall was changed from an emergency basis to a regular recall, will be in along with Anthony Beauvillier, while Alan Quine is out.

Thomas Hickey and Ryan Pulock are in, while Dennis Seidenberg and Scott Mayfield are out.

Tags: Anthony Beauvillier, Josh Ho-Sang, Ryan Pulock, Thomas Greiss, Thomas Hickey
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 (Timothy T. Ludwig)
(Timothy T. Ludwig)

The Islanders announced RW Josh Ho-Sang's recall has been changed from emergency to regular.

Ho-Sang returned to the Islanders from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers on Nov. 11, where he scored his first goal of the season against the Blues. 

However, Ho-Sang's availibility against the Hurricanes Thusday could be limited as he had a bad stomach bug at the beginning of the week, per Newsday's Arthur Staple. He was held out of practice on Monday and Tuesday, but was seen on the ice Wednesday. 

In seven games this season, Ho-Sang has tallied one goal and four assists. 

Tags: Josh Ho-Sang
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 (Billy Hurst)
(Billy Hurst)

The Islanders' victory in St. Louis on Saturday night showed why Doug Weight is the right coach for this team, and why his club will qualify for this season's Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The win was the second time in the last few weeks that the Islanders rebounded well from flat performances. The first was on Oct. 28, when Weight's team blew out the Cup-finalist Predators in Nashville after a bad game in Minnesota two nights earlier. Beating the Blues the night after the Islanders stunk in Dallas showed something. As lost as they looked against the Stars, they found their game at the start in St. Louis.

That's not easy to do.

Tags: John Tavares, Josh Ho-Sang, Mathew Barzal, Chris Botta
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 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

Islanders LW Nikolay Kulemin will be out six months after undergoing a successful surgery on an undisclosed upper-body injury. 

Kulemin left last Tuesday's contest against the Oilers, where the Islanders lost in overtime. 

The 31-year-old is in his fourth season with the Islanders since joining the team for the 2014-2015 season. While missing only one game over his first two seasons, he was out for 10 games last season. 

In 13 games this year, Kulemin has talllied one goal and two assists.

Tags: Nikolay Kulemin
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 (Billy Hurst)
(Billy Hurst)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

In the world of professional sports, there isn't a player that will tell you mental preparation isn't important. In fact, it's almost as important as having more skill than your opponent which leads to victories. Sometimes, the sheer will to win outlasts a more talented foe.

Tags: Anders Lee, Casey Cizikas, Jaroslav Halak, John Tavares, Josh Bailey, Josh Ho-Sang, Nick Leddy, Ryan Pulock, Thomas Greiss, Andy Graziano
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Nov 11, 2017; St. Louis, MO, USA; New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas (53) celebrates after scoring a goal against St. Louis Blues goalie Jake Allen (not pictured) during the first period at Scottrade Center. Mandatory Credit: Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports (Billy Hurst)
Nov 11, 2017; St. Louis, MO, USA; New York Islanders center Casey Cizikas (53) celebrates after scoring a goal against St. Louis Blues goalie Jake Allen (not pictured) during the first period at Scottrade Center. Mandatory Credit: Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports (Billy Hurst)

The Islanders scored three goals in the first period and held on to beat the Blues, 5-2, on Saturday night at the Scottrade Center. >> Box score

Tags: Casey Cizikas, John Tavares, Jordan Eberle
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New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) drives the puck up ice against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. (Andrew Villa-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) drives the puck up ice against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. (Andrew Villa-USA TODAY Sports)

ST. LOUIS -- The good news for the New York Islanders is that they won't have too long to think about getting blown out Friday night with another game set for Saturday night.

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New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight on his bench against the Calgary Flames during the third period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

The Islanders have recalled RW Josh Ho-Sang on an emergency basis for Saturday's game, according to Shannon Hogan of MSG

Ho-Sang has played in six games this season for the Islanders, recording four assists and four total points. 

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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

The Islanders looked lost in their 5-0 shutout to the Dallas Stars on Friday night, and head coach Doug Weight called them out. 

Stars' goalie Ben Bishop faced only 14 shots throughout the three periods as the Stars dominated on every end of the floor. It wasn't the Islanders team Weight was used to seeing, and he made sure they knew that after the game. 

"Some heart would be nice to see," Weight told the MSG Network after the game, "some work ethic, maybe following a game plan and maybe some consistency as far as getting pucks in."

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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

The Islanders were shut out in Dallas as the Stars cruised to a win, 5-0, on their home ice. >> Box score

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New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)

DALLAS -- When the Dallas Stars host the New York Islanders at American Airlines Center on Friday evening, both teams will share a similar goal -- getting a bounce-back win.

The Islanders (8-5-2, 18 points) lost 2-1 in overtime to Edmonton on Tuesday at the Barclays Center. New York will finish the quick two-game road trip Saturday at St. Louis before playing again on Nov. 16 against Carolina.

New York coach Doug Weight said that other than not getting the full two points against one of his former clubs, the Oilers, he was pleased with the Islanders' effort in the overtime loss.

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Apr 4, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Apr 4, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)

Jaroslav Halak will be in net on Friday night as the Islanders face the Stars in Dallas, head coach Doug Weight said.

The team will go with the same defensemen as they did on Tuesday night.

Alan Quine will also be in the lineup.

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Nikolay Kulemin
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Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders center Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with teammates (Christopher Hanewinckel)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV TwitterWhen GM Garth Snow decided to call his 'go-to' in Peter Chiarelli back in June, it was to finalize a lopsided trade that would send Ryan Strome to Edmonton for what was deemed to be an Oilers salary dump in Jordan Eberle.

The 27-year-old forward from Regina had been on the Islanders radar for quite some time and Snow pounced at the opportunity to land the scoring winger who had averaged 27 goals and 62 points in seven previous seasons playing in Alberta while carrying a cap hit of $6 million over the next two seasons.

Eberle then proceeded to marry long-time girlfriend Lauren Rodych before coming to Brooklyn in a ceremony that featured one last hurrah with former and current members of the organization he called home since he was 20-years old...

Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares, Jordan Eberle, Josh Bailey, Mathew Barzal, Andy Graziano
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

I wanted to love the Barclays Center when I went to my first Islanders game there two years ago. I grew up in the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum - twice, actually. The first time was as a child from Hicksville, with the sweetly-gruff security man Mr. Buonagura popping the door open for me and his son Paul on Saturday nights so we could take seats just before the press table in the last row of the old barn. The second time was for the first two decades of adulthood, where I learned a lot about life through some extraordinary times as an Islanders employee.

So when I walked into the Barc for my first game, I didn't want to be that guy who thought everything new was bad.

It didn't last long...

Tags: Anthony Beauvillier, Calvin De Haan, John Tavares, Jordan Eberle, Mathew Barzal, Nikolay Kulemin, Chris Botta
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 (Eric Hartline)
(Eric Hartline)

Josh Ho-Sang has been in the AHL for two weeks, and with a roster spot opening up on Wednesday, it begs the question: Is it time to bring him back?

Nikolay Kulemin, who sustained an upper body injury in Tuesday's overtime loss to the Oilers, was placed on injured reserve. Alan Quine (conditioning) was recalled, but he was already on the team's 23-man roster, which means a slot is still available. Ho-Sang was sent to to Bridgeport on October 25, where he has averaged a point per game (two goals, four assists in six contents) since his demotion. He posted four points, all assists, in his six games with the Isles.

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts: There's a lot to unpack on Ho-Sang. At first blush, his demotion just seemed like another IsLOLanders moment of player development. But this article is an incredible look into the on-air issues that led to Ho-Sang's demotion, and what he needs to work on before he comes back...

Tags: Jason Chimera, Josh Ho-Sang, Nikolay Kulemin, Shane Prince
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders couldn't capitalize on their third period forecheck, and in turn, dropped the contest to the Oilers, 2-1, in overtime. 

It was a lopsided third period as the puck stayed in the Islanders offensive end. However, Oilers G Cam Talbot was stellar, saving 13 shots to cap off a 36-save night. He allowed the one goal from Jordan Eberle in the second period, but was lights out after. 

Mathew Barzal knew the Islanders should have cashed in during their late surge. 

Tags: Jordan Eberle, Mathew Barzal, Thomas Greiss
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Nov 25, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; New York Islanders center Alan Quine (10) and San Jose Sharks center Chris Tierney (50) fight for control of the puck in the second period of the game at SAP Center at San Jose. (Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 25, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; New York Islanders center Alan Quine (10) and San Jose Sharks center Chris Tierney (50) fight for control of the puck in the second period of the game at SAP Center at San Jose. (Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders have recalledAlan Quine from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the AHL and placed Nikolay Kulemin (upper body) on IR, retroactive to Nov. 7.

Quine has been down with the AHL affiliate working on a conditioning loan to get back to full strength. It was the final leg of rehabbing his upper body injury he suffered back in September. He played four games with the Sound Tigers where he notched one goal.

The 24-year-old played 61 games with the Islanders last season where he recorded 18 points (five goals, 13 assists). 

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Nov 7, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) plays the puck in front of Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Strome (18) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 7, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) plays the puck in front of Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Strome (18) during the second period at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Conor McDavid scored the game-winning goal in overtime to lift the Oilers to a 2-1 win over the Islanders on Tuesday at the Barclays Center. >> Box score

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New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)

NEW YORK -- The New York Islanders know all too well how playoff aspirations can be ruined by a poor start. They will look to keep reminding Edmonton of that Tuesday night when the skidding Oilers begin a pivotal four-game East Coast trip during an interconference clash at Barclays Center.

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Oct 7, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders at start of the game against Buffalo Sabres Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports (Nicole Sweet)
Oct 7, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders at start of the game against Buffalo Sabres Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Nicole Sweet-USA TODAY Sports (Nicole Sweet)

Despite the Islanders problems with Barclays Center, they have been enjoying a great record at the Brooklyn arena since the move in 2015. 

The Islanders, who are currently awaiting word to build a new arena at Belmont Park, are 52-23-13 at Barclays Center since their move. The organization has complained about its less than adequate location and ice conditions, but their record shows that they like being home. 

"The guys just seem comfortable. They play well there," head coach Doug Weight told Newsday's Steven Marcus. "They strange thing to me, even when we're not on our game -- I can't say it's the crowd or the atmosphere, whatever it is -- you just have a good chance to win. We've won more games maybe in that building that we feel like coming out of we didn't play that great. We just find ways to win in that building right now, so I don't want to talk too much about it. We have a good mojo there."

Tags: John Tavares
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Oct 6, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Islanders right wing Josh Bailey (12) against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 6, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Islanders right wing Josh Bailey (12) against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Almost a decade ago, Brendan Witt was the veteran in the corner, quietly enjoying a moment of Zen and a cup of locker room Joe while his younger teammates stretched and gabbed about the night before. When the former Islanders defender visited his old team after their game in Los Angeles last month, Witt grinned when he learned the contemplative veteran in the corner with the coffee was now Josh Bailey.

"Bails was such a great kid," Witt recalled of his teammate's rookie season yesterday in a phone conversation from California. "Quiet, reserved…just 18 years old. He had an eagerness to learn what it took to make it in the NHL. Billy Guerin took him under his wing and we all tried to do our best for Josh. It was a tough season, but people should understand that Bails always had the determination. He cared. Stayed after practice, lived in the weight room. Never stopped putting in the time, asking the right questions.

"He's a very good NHL player now. To see him get better every year and really take off lately is gratifying for any of us around back then."

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New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy celebrates his second goal during the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy celebrates his second goal during the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at Barclays Center. (Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports)

Nick Leddy scored two power-play goals, Mathew Barzal recorded five assists and the New York Islanders beat the Colorado Avalanche 6-4 on Sunday at Barclays Center. >> Box Score

Tags: Colorado Avalanche, John Tavares, Johnny Boychuk, Jordan Eberle, Josh Bailey, Mathew Barzal, Nick Leddy
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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

NEW YORK -- A pair of teams looking to continue rewriting the narratives they endured last season will meet Sunday night, when the New York Islanders host the Colorado Avalanche at Barclays Center.

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Apr 4, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Apr 4, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

A relatively quiet week since we last met, with the Islanders playing only two games, a 6-3 win over the Vegas Golden Knights and a tough 4-3 loss on the road in Washington.

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New York Islanders left wing Josh Bailey (12) celebrates his goal scored against the Anaheim Ducks during the first period at Honda Center. (Gary A. Vasquez)
New York Islanders left wing Josh Bailey (12) celebrates his goal scored against the Anaheim Ducks during the first period at Honda Center. (Gary A. Vasquez)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter : Islanders fans have been desiring a 'true' first line for some time now. To be more specific, a true 'first-line winger' to play with captain John Tavares.

Last season, it wasn't quite good enough that Josh Bailey combined with Tavares and rapidly improving Anders Lee to forge a line that combined for 75 goals -- 31 percent of the team's overall production -- and 174 points. This year, through 13 games, it's even higher at 48 percent.

'He'll regress,' they said. 'He will come back down to earth and be the player he's always been offensively,' they added. 'He doesn't shoot enough' was screamed from the rooftops. And my personal favorite of all, 'How many of his assists are secondary assists, though?'

Tags: Anders Lee, Andrew Ladd, John Tavares, Jordan Eberle, Josh Bailey, Mathew Barzal, Nick Leddy, Andy Graziano
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 (Geoff Burke)
(Geoff Burke)

Lars Eller's second goal of the night was the decisive one to help the Capitals beat the Islanders, 4-3, on Thursday at Capital One Arena. >> Box Score

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New York Islanders defenseman Scott Mayfield (42) during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders defenseman Scott Mayfield (42) during the warmup period against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports)

WASHINGTON -- John Tavares and the New York Islanders roll into Washington Thursday night to face a Washington Capitals team still forging an identity during a season unlike their last two.

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New York Islanders head coach Al Arbour waves to fans as he leaves the ice with his wife Clarie after returning to the Islanders to coach his 1500th hockey game as Islanders head coach against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y., Saturday, Nov. 3, 2007. (AP Photo/Ed Betz) (Ed Betz/AP)
New York Islanders head coach Al Arbour waves to fans as he leaves the ice with his wife Clarie after returning to the Islanders to coach his 1500th hockey game as Islanders head coach against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y., Saturday, Nov. 3, 2007. (AP Photo/Ed Betz) (Ed Betz/AP)

Glasses probably attached, Al Arbour came into this world 85 years ago yesterday and remains a warm, stern and wonderful father figure in so many corners of Islanders Country. When Al walked into a room, you knew it. Few people in any walk of life have used their charisma, commanding presence, booming and sometimes soothing voice for more good.

The greatest coach in any sport ever? A few others tend to be in the forefront of the debate, but you can never go wrong by waving the Islanders' nineteen consecutive playoff series victories in your opponent's face. In any friendly arguments at the bar, I prefer to say, Al Arbour was just the greatest, man.

You've heard many of the tales of the Islanders' evolution under Al from 1973 through the four straight Stanley Cups. So let's just take it back a quarter-century to the other time he performed miracles, with the 1992-93 Islanders, for an example of how he pushed the right buttons.

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Sep 17, 2017; Uniondale, NY, USA; General view of the ice before a game between the New York Islanders and the Philadelphia Flyers at NYCB Live at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Sep 17, 2017; Uniondale, NY, USA; General view of the ice before a game between the New York Islanders and the Philadelphia Flyers at NYCB Live at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

As the Islanders await the status of their bid for a new arena, co-owner John Ledecky decided to upgrade their practice facility. 

Ledecky wants the Islanders to be an attractive franchise, like any other owner would want for their team. However, when players know your team is still in limbo with a new stadium, something must be done to compensate for it. That is why Ledecky poured $7 million into the Northwell Health Ice Center, the Islanders' practice facility in East Meadow, Long Island. 

The facility is now one of the best in the NHL with an on-site cyro-chamber and underwater treadmill for rehab assignments, and even a world-class chef for the players and coaches. Ledecky said this new upgrade shows exactly what the organization can do if they were granted to rights to Belmont. 

Tags: John Tavares
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Five years ago last week, Charles Wang announced that the Islanders would move to Barclays Center in Brooklyn for the 2015-16 season. Although that 25-year lease agreement - erroneously reported to be a windfall of cash that would keep the Islanders flush for a generation - turned out to be toilet paper, it's a good time to consider Wang's legacy as Islanders owner.

The view from here is simple: If you have ever cared about the New York Islanders, then you should know that Wang is the person who kept them here - against all odds, against all reason, possibly at times to the detriment of his sanity. That's his legacy. That's why, for all the times over 16 years when Wang or his hockey team made you hang your head or bang it on the table, this is why he should be remembered fondly.

At the urging of his close friend, former senator Al D'Amato, Wang bought the Islanders in April 2000 to keep the Islanders in New York and -- hopefully someday in the following decade -- build a new arena for Long Island as the centerpiece of development of the Nassau HUB. (All these years later, I instinctively dry-heave whenever I hear that three-letter word)...

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New York Islanders center John Tavares celebrates his goal against the Vegas Golden Knights with teammates during the second period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares celebrates his goal against the Vegas Golden Knights with teammates during the second period at Barclays Center. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

The New York Islanders scored five unanswered goals in the second and third periods to beat the upstart Vegas Golden Knights 6-3 on Monday at Barclays Center. >> Read more

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 (Christopher Hanewinckel)
(Christopher Hanewinckel)

Islanders C John Tavares was named the NHL's First Star of the Week after performances that included two hat tricks. 

Tavares notched his first hat trick of the week against the Coyotes last Tuesday in a 5-3 victory. He didn't total a point against the Wild on Thursday, but he would rebound with another hat trick against the Predators on Saturday in a 6-2 win. 

It was the 27-year-old's seventh and eighth career hat tricks while posting an NHL-best six goals for the week. He also tallied an assists for seven total points. 

Tags: John Tavares
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New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares (Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports)

The Vegas Golden Knights are threatening to rewrite the template for successful expansion franchises authored four decades ago by the New York Islanders.

The most surprising story in hockey visits the East Coast for the first time Monday, when the surging Golden Knights begin a six-game road trip by visiting the Islanders at Barclays Center. >> Read more

Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press

Tags: John Tavares
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New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) drives the puck up ice against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. (Andrew Villa-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) drives the puck up ice against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. (Andrew Villa-USA TODAY Sports)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

I know... I know. Joking about power being restored when there is a possibility for some of us to lose it this evening with a powerful nor'Easter approaching is a lame attempt at being clever. Just know, I'm terrible at titles, always have been and sometimes this is all you're going to get, unfortunately. Stay safe people.

Tags: Alain Quine, Jaroslav Halak, Jason Chimera, John Tavares, Johnny Boychuk, Josh Ho-Sang, Nick Leddy, Ryan Pulock, Thomas Greiss, Andy Graziano
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Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders players celebrate after scoring during the second period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)
Oct 28, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders players celebrate after scoring during the second period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports (Christopher Hanewinckel)

After the Nashville Predators tied the game at 1-1 in the second period, the Islanders scored five unanswered goals and sailed to a 6-2 win on Saturday at the Bridgestone Arena. >> Read more

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New York Islanders celebrate a goal by forward Anders Lee (27) against the Minnesota Wild during the third period at Xcel Energy Center. (Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders celebrate a goal by forward Anders Lee (27) against the Minnesota Wild during the third period at Xcel Energy Center. (Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports)

In their last home game before their yearly CMA road trip, the Nashville Predators will try to defeat fatigue and the New York Islanders Saturday night in Bridgestone Arena.

Less than 24 hours after getting 43 saves from Pekka Rinne in a 2-1 victory at Chicago, Nashville (5-3-2) takes on a New York team that practiced in Nashville Friday after suffering a 6-4 defeat Thursday night in Minnesota.

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 (Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

Defensemen Ryan Pulock and Dennis Seidenberg will be back in the lineup and Scott Mayfield and Thomas Hickey will sit as the Islanders take on the Predators on Saturday, head coach Doug Weight told reporters. 

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Ryan Pulock
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Oct 26, 2017; Saint Paul, MN, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy (2) drives to the net during the second period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports (Marilyn Indahl)
Oct 26, 2017; Saint Paul, MN, USA; New York Islanders defenseman Nick Leddy (2) drives to the net during the second period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Marilyn Indahl-USA TODAY Sports (Marilyn Indahl)

The Minnesota Wild scored a season-high six goals in a 6-4 win over the Islanders on Thursday at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. >> Read more

Tags: Anders Lee, Anthony Beauvillier, Johnny Boychuk, Nick Leddy
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Oct 6, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets center Pierre-Luc Dubois (18) skates against New York Islanders defenseman Thomas Hickey (14) at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 6, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets center Pierre-Luc Dubois (18) skates against New York Islanders defenseman Thomas Hickey (14) at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

SAINT PAUL, Minn. -- As they embark on a two-game road trip, the New York Islanders are getting used to new skaters playing together.

In the midst of a six-game homestand, the injury-riddled Minnesota Wild are doing the same thing.

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Mar 25, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) (Anthony Gruppuso)
Mar 25, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Islanders right wing Joshua Ho-Sang (66) (Anthony Gruppuso)

In ten years as Yankees manager, Joe Girardi led one team to a World Series championship, and another one -- with some incredible young players, but thought to be a little while from contending -- to Game 7 of the ALCS. In that time, he faced the music for his decision-making with a large press corps twice a day for nearly 200 days a year.

In just the latest illustration of the enormous advantage the general manager has of schmoozing the owner in the suite, on the road and over the phone, Garth Snow has out-lasted Joe Girardi in New York.

Josh Ho-Sang is no different than any of the talented and dedicated hockey players before him that have been sent to the minors. His focus should be on putting the work in, being a good teammate, and returning to the Islanders.

Tags: John Tavares, Josh Ho-Sang, Michael dal Colle, Chris Botta
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Nov 25, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; New York Islanders center Alan Quine (10) and San Jose Sharks center Chris Tierney (50) fight for control of the puck in the second period of the game at SAP Center at San Jose. (Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 25, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; New York Islanders center Alan Quine (10) and San Jose Sharks center Chris Tierney (50) fight for control of the puck in the second period of the game at SAP Center at San Jose. (Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports)

Islanders C Alan Quine has been removed from the IR, and will join the Bridgeport Sound Tigers to work on his conditioning, the team announced Thursday. 

Quine has been out with an upper-body injury since Sep. 12, which had him miss all of training camp. He was expected to miss 4-6 weeks at the time. 

The 24-year-old notched 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in 61 games with the Islanders last season. 

Tags: Alain Quine
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 (Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)
(Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports)

St. Louis-born Scott Mayfield, a 6-foot-4, 227-pound defenseman, made an early career in the minor leagues, playing for the Islanders' AHL affiliate, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Since 2013-14, when he was 21 years old, it was an early exit from training camp with the main squad to return to Connecticut for another year of riding the buses of the feeder league.

At the beginning of last season, Mayfield had racked up 194 games for the Tigers and only 11 at the NHL level, filling in when injuries called for an extra body to be recalled and made part of the 20-man roster. After being sent back once again, he was recalled and appeared in a career-high 25 games with New York, putting up very respectable numbers with nine points on two goals while averaging 14 minutes of ice time. This year, after paying his dues, the time has come.

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 (Eric Hartline)
(Eric Hartline)

The Islanders have sent F Josh Ho-Sang to Bridgeport of the AHL, the team announced Wednesday.

Ho-Sang, 21, had zero goals and four assists in six games this season.

"We've had great talks. It's never easy, whether it's a conversation about being scratched or something like this," head coach Doug Weight told Newsday's Arthur Staple. "It was lengthy, good, healthy and from what I take from it, he couldn't be more excited to go down, prove to himself and the organization that this isn't going to go on anymore, that we do need him and he'll come back and help us here.

Tags: Jason Chimera, Josh Ho-Sang, Nikolay Kulemin
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 (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
(Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

John Tavares scored three goals in the final two periods to secure a hat trick and a win for the Islanders, who earned a 5-3 road win over the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday.  >> Read more

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

NEW YORK -- A winless team heading out on a five-game road trip faces a difficult enough task. However, the challenges facing the Arizona Coyotes will grow even taller Tuesday night, when they visit a New York Islanders squad accustomed to feasting upon Western Conference foes at Barclays Center. 

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 (Andy Marlin)
(Andy Marlin)

Invitations were distributed a few months ago for the latest pre-game gathering of Islanders alumni, but this time would be different.

Second-year Islanders majority co-owner Jon Ledecky didn't just send invitation letters to the usual dozen or so former stars. That's the way it had been done for decades by previous management. The inspiration now was, if you even donned an Islanders sweater for just one game, you deserved to be there.

Literally, if you were even just once an Islander, you are always an Islander.

Tags: Anders Lee, John Tavares, Nikolay Kulemin, Ryan Pulock, Chris Botta
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