CB on FanHouse: Stanley Cup or Bust for Laviolette

Chris Botta on Twitter

Botta/Schultz on FanHouse: Silence in the Trade Market

 

10:20 am - A league source tells Point Blank that Islanders general manager Garth Snow has contacted NHL teams in search of a mobile and experienced defenseman.

 

"Garth is asking around, trying to make something happen," said the source. "His biggest obstacle is that a lot of teams are looking for the same thing."

 

The Islanders play in Philadelphia tonight with a thin blue line. Radek Martinek is out for the season. Andy Sutton (groin) could return on Saturday for the home match with Boston, but is out tonight and tomorrow. Bridgeport recall Andrew MacDonald is getting 12 minutes a game, while veteran defenseman Brendan Witt is at a team-low minus-15 and only played 11 minutes Saturday in Tampa Bay. Other than Dustin Kohn in a pinch, the Sound Tigers do not have a defenseman knocking on the door.

 

NHL defensemen that could be available and fit the Islanders' low-cost needs - in terms of the acquisition price of a mid-round draft pick - include Carolina's Joe Corvo (injured), Aaron Ward, Toronto's hard-hitting but mobility-challenged Garnet Exelby and - in a salary dump but a long shot to return - Chicago's Brent Sopel. Corvo and Ward would be sound acquisitions.

 

(Trivia note: in his 40 days on the job, Islanders GM Neil Smith tried to sign Ward, but - oh, the irony - was out-bid by the Rangers).

 

Teams also in the hunt for defensemen include the Rangers and Columbus.

 

With little action in the NHL trade market, the Islanders will probably have to get by through the holidays with the blue line they have. The best option passed through their hands when Los Angeles snatched Randy Jones off re-entry waivers from Philadelphia last month. The 28-year old Jones is 4-5-9 in 12 games and is playing more than 20 minutes a game since joining the Kings - all for well below the league average salary.

 

While the Islanders unearthed a hidden AHL gem in Matt Moulson, they did not make the most of their early position in the waiver pecking order and $17 million of cap space (it can't all got to Kovalchuk!). The Islanders did take Rob Schremp, who has watched more hockey games from the press box lately than Peter Botte.

 

For depth on defense, the Islanders may have to scour the AHL ranks for a veteran stop-gap. San Jose/Worcester defenseman Joe Callahan, who was solid in 18 games with the Islanders last season, is available.

 

Snow is doing what good GMs do - dropping lines in the water, as he calls it. Although he probably will not land a defenseman this week, he is laying the groundwork for a potential deal in February. The way the Islanders have continued to find ways to win this season, it should not be too late.

 

*

 

PB on NHL Home Ice Tonight: I'll be on with Jim "Boomer Gordon" on Sirius/XM NHL Home Ice beginning at 6:00 pm talking about tonight's game and all things Islanders.

 

Tonight's Lineup: Martin Biron in net tonight, Dwayne Roloson gets an encore in Toronto on Wednesday. Same forward lines and D pairings.

 

As if the Islanders' D is not having enough trouble staying healthy, Katie Strang tweeted this morning that Brendan Witt was hit by a car in Philadelphia. This being a hockey player - this being Brendan Witt - he will play tonight.

 

As expected, Jeremy Reich has cleared waivers. He's a good addition to the Sound Tigers and could be a solid toughness call-up for the Islanders.

 

For the Flyers, Ray Emery has been placed on IR. Brian Boucher starts. The Flyers are also missing Simon Gagne, Blair Betts and Darroll Powe. Consistent with his slumping team, Jeff Carter has just one goal in his last 11 games - count on one tonight. James van Riemsdyk is goal-less in nine games, or around the time FanHouse wrote him up as one of John Tavares's top competitors for the Calder.

 

Lavi Thanks LI: Flyers coach Peter Laviolette tonight meets the first franchise to give him a shot as a head man. "The Islanders are always going to have a special place in my heart," the Stanley Cup-winning coach told Point Blank. "They gave me my first opportunity when I had no idea if one would ever come. We made great friends on Long Island, friends we have to this day. The fans were wonderful to my family. We loved our time with the Islanders and will always be thankful to Charles Wang for everything he did for us."

 

DP Progress: Rick DiPietro continues on the road back in Bridgeport. The goalie took the full practice with the Sound Tigers yesterday and stayed late for extra shots. He's practicing again today."I feel good," he said. Next up: Friday in Springfield or Saturday in Hartford, followed by - if his knee continues to hold up - a home game a week from tonight against Portland. If DiPietro has no setbacks, gets in NHL game shape and sharpens his play, he will return to the Islanders in the middle of next week.

 

With everything going so smoothly in DiPietro's protocol, a year later it continues to astound that the Islanders never had him start his rehabilitation slowly last season with games in Bridgeport.

 

Point Blank Night Tomorrow: It's a lock - we'll have our biggest crowd yet on Wednesday night when PB Night moves to SOCIAL, across the street from the Coliseum. Islanders vs. Toronto at SOCIAL on a dozen screens. Guests: Steve Webb, Deb Placey. Free buffet and $1 Bud drafts from 7-8 pm. Complimentary shots after each Islanders goal. Free raffle for all. All ages welcome, 21 and over to drink. SOCIAL is at 1002 Hempstead Turnpike across from the Coliseum. PLEASE RSVP (YESSES ONLY) AT THIS LINK. I'm also on Facebook. Don't miss it.

 

Kinger Gets the Play-by-Play: Since the game is on Versus and there's no Plus broadcast to simulcast, Chris King will do the honors on the Islanders Radio Network. Last I heard, he's doing the game all by himself. A color commentator would be nice, but if anyone can do pull off the play-by-play and keep the listener informed, it's Kinger.

 

Deep Thoughts: As good as Atlanta has been, the Islanders are just four points behind them. As bad as Toronto has been, the Maple Leafs are now just four points behind the Islanders.

 

Score-O!: Predict the score (and the winner) of tonight's game in Comments.

 

I'll be away on assignment. Kevin Schultz of NHL FanHouse and Barry Melrose Rocks will stop by for tonight's tilt.

Tags: News

New York Islanders players watch from the bench. (Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders players watch from the bench. (Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports)

The Worcester Railers will be the New York Islanders' new ECHL affiliate, the organization announced Friday.

The Railers, who will play at the DCU Center, join the Bridgeport Sound Tigers as the Islanders' primary minor league affiliates.

"The proximity of having our ECHL team within driving distance from Bridgeport and the Islanders is a definite benefit," Islanders GM Garth Snow said in a press release.

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Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) skates up ice with the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Mar 24, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; New York Islanders center John Tavares (91) skates up ice with the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the third period at the PPG PAINTS Arena. The Islanders won 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. The guys have taken on Garth Snow's potential fate, and the chances of building a new arena at Belmont Park. In the final installment, it's the chances of signing captain John Tavares to an extension…

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

The Islanders have begun to prep their pitch for an extension to John Tavares. So Andy, what do you think is the linchpin to getting this thing done this summer?

Tags: John Tavares, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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 (Brace Hemmelgarn)
(Brace Hemmelgarn)

The Islanders are preparing their extension pitch for team captain John Tavaresreports Elliotte Friedman

Tavares, 26, is eligible to sign a contract extension with the Isles on July 1.

He is about to enter the sixth and final season of the $33 million deal he signed prior to the 2012-13 season. 

Tags: John Tavares
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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

As playoff hockey roars on into the second round, the Islanders faithful are back in that somewhat familiar position of waiting around for the NHL Draft. And with the lottery set to take place this Saturday night, the Isles know to a virtual certainty the ping pong balls hold no surprises for them.

The Islanders have the worst chance of moving up and grabbing the number one pick in the draft -- a 0.9 percent chance, to be exact. So while the Avalanche (18 percent), Canucks (12.1 percent), and Golden Knights and Coyotes (10.3 percent) wait around with bated breath for the right to draft Nolan Patrick, the Islanders know that they'll likely be picking 15th, saddled with the distinction of being the first team on the outside of the postseason looking in.

That doesn't mean much, though. In fact, the Isles' sprint to the finish that fell just short of the playoffs meant far more than any delusions of NHL lottery grandeur...

Tags: John Tavares, Brian Erni
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The Islanders have re-signed D Dennis Seidenberg to a one-year deal, the team announced Monday.

Seidenberg, 35, had five goals and 17 assists in 73 games played for the Isles this past season after signing a one-year deal during the offseason.

He had spent the last seven seasons with the Bruins, accumulating 23 goals and 94 assists in 401 games. He had two years remaining on his contract with Boston but the team bought out the rest of his deal in July. 

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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

The Islanders plan to submit a bid to build a new arena at Belmont Racetrack, NHL commissioner said Friday, according to Newsday.

Bettmann said the Islanders are reviewing their options, while noting the land near Citi Field could be another potential spot for a new arena.

He added that the recently renovated Nassau Coliseum is not a long-term option.

Read More

Brian Compton and Mike Carver are ready to wrap the season, and are joined by Islanders forward Anders Lee for a chat about all things Isles. Later, Brian and Mike do a deep dive into the official announcement that Doug Weight is the head coach, what needs to happen in the offseason, and the dirty pool which is more arena talk!

Click below to listen...

 

Tags: Anders Lee
Read More

 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. Last week, the guys took on Garth Snow's fate and the possibility of a new team president. This week, it's the latest in talk of a new arena…

 

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Read More

New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube (30) guards his net against the Calgary Flames during the second period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)
New York Islanders goalie Jean-Francois Berube (30) guards his net against the Calgary Flames during the second period at Scotiabank Saddledome. (Sergei Belski)

Jean-Francois Berube is not expected to return to the Islanders next season as he plans on testing free agency, according to Arthur Staple of Newsday.

Berube started seven games for New York this past season, going 3-2-2 with an .889 save percentage and 3.42 GAA.

The Islanders already have goalies Jaroslav Halak and Thomas Greiss under contract next season.

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Islanders general manager Garth Snow (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)

Islanders General Manager Garth Snow is likely not in danger of being fired, according to Elliotte Friedman of SportsNet.

"He is safer than many of us expected," Friedman said during Hockey Night in Canada. 

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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders head coach Doug Weight talks to forward Andrew Ladd (16) during the time out against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Andy Graziano, SNY.tv: The NHL will conclude Game 2 of all first-round playoff series tonight as the Islanders begin their summer vacations after missing out on the tournament by one single point. A point that will lead to a summer that could be the most defining in franchise history.

One last time for 2016-17, I present my thoughts via the scratchpad. After writing plenty of wrap-up material this week, including my retrospective and what's next, in addition to friend and colleague Brian Erni and I discussing the future of Garth Snow, now it's my turn to sit back on the couch and appreciate the greatest game on its biggest stage.

You, the reader, are essential to the success of SNY's Islanders Point Blank. We thank you for staying with us throughout the season - visiting, reading and commenting. This job is thankless and unforgiving. At times, downright exhausting. But to know you're reaching a large contingent of passionate Islanders fans, feeding their hunger for information, makes it all worth it, whether you agree with us or not. 

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 (Ed Mulholland)
(Ed Mulholland)

This summer stands to be one full of franchise-defining issues for the Islanders. In a series of roundtables, SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano will discuss these topics. First up: Garth Snow's fate and the possibility of a new team president...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Alright, Andy. We now know Doug Weight will be back, as he'll be the main man behind the bench, but what about Garth Snow? Are the Islanders going to bring in a team president, and if so, will Snow stay on in some capacity?

Read More

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

This spring will be the latest in a series that has tested the mettle of the Islanders from top down -- ownership, general manager, head coach and even players are not excluded from the exercise. The spring of 2017 could, however, prove to be the most challenging and defining of all.

We are officially at the end of year-one of the Jon Ledecky/Scott Malkin era of ownership, Garth Snow remains at the helm of hockey operations and Doug Weight, he of 40 games of NHL head coaching experience, was seemingly the only option in a summer that saw at least four others looking for work who had pedigree, and some even Stanley Cups, on their resume.

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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Latest Update (April 12)

8:00PM: The operators of Barclays Center are attempting to get the Islanders to return to Nassau Coliseum, according to a Newsday report

The offer to move the Islanders back to their former home would include adding seats to the building. 

Read More

 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

The Islanders named Doug Weight head coach this morning, removing the interim tag from his name and assigning him the task of making it to the Stanley Cup playoffs in 2017-18 with a club that missed out by a single point this season.

GM Garth Snow, who looks to have retained his job for the upcoming season, joined Weight on a conference call announcing the move. And Snow addressed the three-headed goaltending drama that might have sunk the Islanders chances at competing for the ultimate prize a third straight season.

First,n Weight began by saying he thought long and hard about this decision over the past two days. And after discussing the matter with family and friends, came to a quick decision after being told he was the man, first and foremost, that management wanted to be the new bench boss.

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 (Sergei Belski)
(Sergei Belski)

The Islanders have taken the interim tag off Doug Weight, naming him head coach on Wednesday.

"Doug has earned this opportunity from the tremendous work he has put in over the past five seasons in our front office and especially from the time he took over as interim Head Coach earlier this season," President and General Manager Garth Snow said in a release. "His leadership and experiences from both playing and behind the bench are valuable intangibles that not every coach can translate into a winning formula. He's gained the trust and respect from our entire team, making him the best choice to become Head Coach."

Weight guided the Isles to a 24-12-4 record after taking over this season for the fired Jack Capuano.

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Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 14, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders forward John Tavares (91) celebrates his game winning overtime goal with his teammates against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Islanders defeated the Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV Twitter

The Islanders finished the 2016-17 season on a six-game winning streak, which included wins over four teams that did not advance to the Stanley Cup playoffs. In the end, it wasn't enough to continue their modest two-season playoff streak.

An ugly first quarter, marked by questionable defensive coverage, poor transition play, a powerless play and questionable management decisions will have them watching 16 teams compete for the ultimate prize from their living rooms. The fact that their 94 points are just two shy of the NHL record for most while missing the postseason (2014-15 Bruins had 96, 2006-07 Avalanche and 2010-11 Stars had 95) is no consolation, especially to the captain.

"Overall, as a team, it's disappointing, not making the playoffs," John Tavares said. "There are so many games to look back on, the opportunities we let slip away, and that's definitely frustrating. In a sense, it's a step back. What did we have, 94 points? So, three wins off last year. But, it's such a fine line. We need to step back, reflect and prepare to get where we need to be."

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 (Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)
(Charles LeClaire/USA Today Sports Images)

The Islanders cleaned out their lockers and had their exit interviews on Monday.

Eliminated from playoff contention Saturday, the Isles wrapped up the 2016-17 campaign with a 4-2 win over the Senators on Sunday.

They finished 41-29-12 (94 points), one point behind the Maple Leafs, who snagged the second and final Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference. 

Tags: Cal Clutterbuck, Jason Chimera, John Tavares, Nikolay Kulemin, Travis Hamonic
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New York Islanders left wing Nikolay Kulemin celebrates his goal with teammates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at MTS Centre. (Bruce Fedyck)
New York Islanders left wing Nikolay Kulemin celebrates his goal with teammates against the Winnipeg Jets during the first period at MTS Centre. (Bruce Fedyck)

The Islanders missed the playoffs by one point, but could their 2016-2017 failure lead to bigger things in the future?

"That's the margin for error these days," Josh Bailey said. "There's so much parity now, all it takes is that one point. You sometimes don't think of it at the time necessarily, but those are the ones that get you in or keep you out."

"We're going home and we're packing up," Anders Lee, who scored his 34th goal of the season in Sunday's season finale, added. "Our season is over without a chance to continue. It's a bitter feeling."

Though the disappointment stings, interim coach Doug Weight said he believes that this near-miss doesn't change the positive path the organization is on.

Tags: Anders Lee, Josh Bailey
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Doug Weight is still unsure whether he wants a career in coaching, but it sure looks like he's the perfect fit for this Islanders club.

The Isles went 24-12-4 during Weight's interim tenure, and the former NHL All-Star seemed to have earned the respect of the locker room over that stretch.

"His communication and his leadership were followed. The guys want to play for him," Anders Lee said of the coach. "Dougie came in and really changed the mindset of the team. He's got a bright future in coaching. If he wants to do it, he'll be successful."

Tags: Anders Lee, Andrew Ladd
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New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss defends the goal against Ottawa Senators center Christopher DiDomenico in the first period at Barclays Center. (Nicole Sweet/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders goalie Thomas Greiss defends the goal against Ottawa Senators center Christopher DiDomenico in the first period at Barclays Center. (Nicole Sweet/USA TODAY Sports)

The New York Islanders beat the Ottawa Senators 4-2 on Sunday at Barclays Center in their season finale. >> Read more


First period:

  • 3:23 NYI Andrew Ladd; Assists: Alan Quine, Johnny Boychuk

Second period:

  • 8:17 NYI Anders Lee; Assists: Josh Bailey, Brock Nelson
  • 13:52 NYI Brock Nelson; Assists: Adam Pelech, Scott Mayfield
  • 18:54 OTT Bobby Ryan; Assist: Ryan Dzingel

Third period:

  • 2:34 OTT Jean-Gabriel Pageau; Assists: Alexandre Burrows, Chris Neil
  • 18:52 NYI Jason Chimera (ENG); Assists: Nelson, Leddy
Tags: Alain Quine, Anders Lee, Andrew Ladd, Brock Nelson, Jason Chimera, Johnny Boychuk, Nick Leddy, Ottawa Senators
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New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders briefly maintained their playoff chances with a win over the Devils on Saturday, but were later eliminated when the Maple Leafs defeated the Penguins and clinched the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. 

The Islanders will miss the postseason for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

The Islanders will wrap up their season on Sunday when they will host the Ottawa Senators at The Barclays Center.

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New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)
New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)

Anders Lee scored two goals and Jaroslav Halak saved 37 shots as the Islanders beat the Devils on Saturday at the Prudential Center. >> Read more


First period

No goals

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New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and New Jersey Devils center Adam Henrique (14) battle for the puck during the second period at Prudential Center. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders right wing Cal Clutterbuck (15) and New Jersey Devils center Adam Henrique (14) battle for the puck during the second period at Prudential Center. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)

The Islanders and Devils play each other for the final time this season at 6 p.m. at the Prudential Center. 

According to STATS: 

  • The Islanders beat the Hurricanes, 3-0, at PNC Arena on Thursday night, keeping their slim postseason hopes alive in the process. New York has won four straight games -- its longest win streak of the 2016-17 campaign.
  • New Jersey lost, 7-4, to Pittsburgh at Prudential Center on Thursday night, dropping to 1-5-2 in the last eight games overall. The seven goals scored by the Pens were the most allowed by the Devils in any game this season.
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New York Islanders left wing Andrew Ladd (16) receives congratulations from teammates after scoring a goal in the first period against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. (Rick Osentoski)
New York Islanders left wing Andrew Ladd (16) receives congratulations from teammates after scoring a goal in the first period against the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. (Rick Osentoski)

In what has been a common second half occurrence, Andrew Ladd found the back of the net again on Thursday to help the Islanders walk out of Carolina with two huge points.

With the Islanders already leading 2-0 and New York on the power play to start the second period, Ladd took a pass from Josh Bailey, ripped a wrister, and beat Eddie Lack for his 22nd goal of the season.

"We tried to stick with it, especially losing the personnel that we've lost," Ladd told reporters after the game. "We had guys step in and I think we've simplified our game a little bit."

Tags: Andrew Ladd, John Tavares, Josh Bailey
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New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)
New York Islanders forward Andrew Ladd (16) celebrates his second period goal with teammates forward Anders Lee (27) and forward Josh Bailey (12) against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. (James Guillory)

The Islanders need wins in their final two games and some help to reach their third straight postseason.

To qualify for the final Wild Card spot, the Islanders need all four points in their final two games, and need the Maple Leafs to get no more than one point over the course of their last two. The Islanders visit New Jersey on Saturday and host the Senators on Sunday. Toronto will host the Penguins on Saturday and the Blue Jackets on Sunday.

"I think it's a credit to the guys in the locker room," Anders Lee said of the Isles' run to the final spot. "We are a resilient group and we've fought out of a lot of stuff this year and we're not going to go down easy."

Tags: Anders Lee
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Apr 6, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders defensemen Nick Leddy (2) and New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate after the victory against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Apr 6, 2017; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Islanders defensemen Nick Leddy (2) and New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) celebrate after the victory against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Islanders defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Jaroslav Halak had 29 saves to lead the Islanders in a 3-0 shutout victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday night at PNC Arena. >> Read more


First Period

1:27 NYI Brock Nelson

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Brian Compton and Mike Carver discuss John Tavares' hamstring injury, Jaroslav Halak's resurgence, and the team's knack for coming up small in certain games. Later, the TV voice of the Isles, Brendan Burke, calls into the show to give his take on Josh Ho-Sang, the goaltending drama, and the future of Doug Weight.

Click below to listen!

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, John Tavares
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 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

Islanders prospect Devon Toews of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers has been named to the 2016-17 AHL All-Rookie Team, it was announced Thursday.

Toews, a defenseman who has played in 71 games this season, leads all AHL rookies with 37 assists. 

He was selected by the Islanders in the fourth round of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft.

Tags: Nick Leddy
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 (AP)
(AP)

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Matt Moulson wants hospitalized Buffalo Sabres teammate Kyle Okposo to know he has the team's support.

"You're family here," Moulson said after the Sabres closed their home schedule with a 2-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday night. "And no matter what type of injury or what you have, you always feel for them and their family and giving them support."

Okposo has spent the past three days in a Buffalo hospital undergoing a battery of tests to determine an undisclosed illness that has sidelined him for more than a week.

Tags: Kyle Okposo
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New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire)
New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save against the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime at the PPG PAINTS Arena. (Charles LeClaire)

Jaroslav Halak has been red hot since rejoining the Islanders for the stretch run.

Halak made 22 of 23 saves in the Isles' overtime win, his fourth victory since March 24.

"Obviously, I'm happy that I'm playing right now," Halak told reporters after the game.

Halak even got on the score sheet, as he assisted on Thomas Hickey's game winner.  

Tags: Jaroslav Halak, Thomas Greiss
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New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) after scoring a goal during the third period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. (Christopher Hanewinckel)
New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) after scoring a goal during the third period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. (Christopher Hanewinckel)

Brock Nelson broke out of a cold streak and scored a clutch third period goal in the Islanders' 2-1 overtime victory in Nashville.

A minute-and-a-half into the third period, with New York trailing 1-0, Nelson ripped a wrist shot past Pekka Rinne for his18th goal of the season.

For Nelson, the goal was his first since March 24, a stretch of five games without a goal, and just his second in his last 11 games.

Tags: Anders Lee, Brock Nelson, Ryan Strome
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Apr 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. The Predators won 3-0.  (Christopher Hanewinckel (USA Today))
Apr 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; New York Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak (41) makes a save during the first period against the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena. The Predators won 3-0. (Christopher Hanewinckel (USA Today))

Recap

Thomas Hickey scored 1:25 into overtime, and the New York Islanders beat the Nashville Predators 2-1 Tuesday night to preserve their thin playoff hopes for at least another game.

Brock Nelson also scored for the Islanders, and goalie Jaroslav Halak made 22 saves as they won their third straight in chasing the Eastern Conference's second wild card.

Read More

New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Islanders left wing Anders Lee with the puck as Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel pursues during the first period at KeyBank Center. (Kevin Hoffman/USA TODAY Sports)

Anders Lee scored twice in the third period to lead the New York Islanders to a 4-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday at KeyBank Center. >> Read more


First period:

  • 9:31 NYI Cal Clutterbuck; Assist: Nick Leddy

Second period:

  • 10:08 BUF Evander Kane; Assist: C.J. Smith
  • 11:04 NYI Joshua Ho-Sang; Assist: Dennis Seidenberg

Third period:

  • 5:17 BUF Zemgus Girgensons; Assists: Matt Moulson, William Carrier
  • 9:19 NYI Anders Lee
  • 14:33 NYI Lee
Tags: Anders Lee, Cal Clutterbuck, Nick Leddy, Buffalo Sabres
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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)

Andy Graziano, SNY.TV: 

Barring a miraculous event of biblical proportions, this will be the final week of the New York Islanders 2016-17 season.

They currently trail the Boston Bruins by six points with a game in hand but only five games remaining. Since it's now impossible to catch the Bs in regulation wins (40-34), that deficit is seven points. That would mean picking up 70% of remaining possible points with the Bruins picking up zero points in their final four games.

I don't need to tell you that's very….very….very unlikely. 

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The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
The Islanders' Thomas Hickey, left, and center John Tavares show their frustration during Thursday's home loss to Winnipeg. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

In what has been a difficult season and with time running out, the New York Islanders will have to get around a roadblock at the worst possible time in a last-ditch effort to secure a playoff spot.

With leading scorer and captain John Tavares out for the foreseeable future, the Islanders open a four-game road trip Sunday against the Buffalo Sabres.

While still mathematically in the mix, the Islanders' chances of a third straight playoff appearance are slim. New York (36-29-12) and Carolina trail Boston by six points for the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. The Islanders and Hurricanes each have five games remaining and the Bruins have four.

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

The Islanders said Saturday captain John Tavares is "week-to-week" with a lower-body injury sustained late in the Islanders' 2-1 victory over the Devils Friday.

That likely means he is out for the remainder of the regular season as the Islanders try to keep their playoff hopes alive. The Islanders are four points behind the Bruins for the final Eastern Conference playoff berth with five games to play.

Tavares, who has 66 points this season, had to be helped off the ice with 3:14 remaining iafter getting tangled up with the back of the net and a Devils player. Tavares was clutching the back of his left leg in the hamstring area.

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

Recap

Anders Lee and Anthony Beauvillier scored to help the New York Islanders preserve their slim playoff chances with a 2-1 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

Jaroslav Halak stopped 26 shots as the Islanders pulled four points behind Boston for the second wild card in the Eastern Conference. New York won at home for the first time since beating the Devils here on Feb. 19, going 0-4-1 at Barclays Center in between.

Tags: Anders Lee
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 (John E. Sokolowski (USA Today))
(John E. Sokolowski (USA Today))

Reports have started to indicate that John Tavares wants to have his mind made up about what to do about his next contract this summer. Have the Islanders given him enough reason to stay? SNY's Brian Erni and Andy Graziano discuss...

Brian Erni, SNY.TV Twitter | Archive Posts

Alright, Andy. Lots of John Tavares murmuring of late, with the Canadian media luminaries (like Elliotte Friedman and Darren Dreger) alluding to the idea that JT wants to have his mind made up on a course of action by June. Where do you think things stand at this very moment?

Tags: John Tavares, Andy Graziano, Brian Erni
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 (Charles LeClaire)
(Charles LeClaire)

Islanders defenseman Travis Hamonic did not return to the game against the Flyers after suffering an upper-body injury in the first period. The 26-year-old dropped the gloves and fought Philadelphia's Dale Weise in the opening period.

Hamonic was seen following the Islanders' loss with a cast on his left hand.

The 26-year-old has tallied three goals and 11 assists in 48 games this season.

Tags: Travis Hamonic
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