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matt donovan

Matt Donovan is excited to be back in the Islanders lineup when they host the Montreal Canadiens.

The Islander defenseman has spent a majority of the 2014-15 season watching the games, rather than playing in them. Donovan has only suited up for nine of the Isles 70 games this year. The Isles upgraded defense and depth has not given Donovan too many opportunities to get back in the lineup when injuries on the back end have occurred.

"I think we have a great defensive core," Donovan said. "There's a reason I haven't been playing a lot and that's because we have a lot of great defensemen. They've been playing well."

Tags: Islanders, jack capuano, matt donovan, new york islanders
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Matt Donovan has not played in an NHL contest for the Islanders since January, but that will change tonight when he suits up to face the Montreal Canadiens.

The 24-year-old defenseman will take the spot of Lubomir Visnovsky on the blue line. Donovan has played in just nine games this season and has three points on the year.

"He's been working extremely hard and he's had a great attitude," head coach Jack Capuano said about Donovan. "He deserves to be in there, so he gets that opportunity tonight."

Tags: frans nielsen, Islanders, matt donovan, new york islanders, News, ryan strome
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No one would blame Matt Donovan for being mad about not having played an NHL game yet in 2014-15.

But Donovan isn't mopping around speaking out to the press about his lack of playing time. Rather the 24-year-old Oklahoma native is taking things in stride and remaining prepared for when his name is called to jump into the Islanders lineup.

"Anything can happen and injuries happen," Donovan told Islanders Point Blank. "So you just have to stay ready and work hard everyday. When I get my chance I'll play the way I know I can."

Tags: Islanders, jack capuano, matt donovan, new york islanders, News
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UFz_vr4Ib4During the second period tonight, Matt Donovan fired a point shot that trickled past Coyotes netminder Mike Smith to give the Islanders a 3-1 lead. It was a power play goal and was the first of Donovan's NHL career in his sixth NHL game. After spending last the last two years in Bridgeport, Donovan made the big club out of training camp this season. Donovan is from Edmond, Oklahoma and is the first player born and raised in the state of Oklahoma to score an NHL goal. Former Avalanche forward Tyler Arnason was born in Oklahoma City, but raised in Winnipeg.The Isles currently lead 5-1 late in the second period.
Tags: Islanders, matt donovan, Prospects, Videos, Kevin Schultz
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UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- If Matt Donovan and Brock Nelson have been having any trouble adjusting to the NHL, it sure didn't show in Friday night's 6-4 win over the Nashville Predators.Both players saw upwards of 16 minutes of ice time during the game and they made the most of it. Donovan recored his first goal of the preseason at the 12:44 mark of the second period and Nelson put up two assists, including one on Donovan's goal.The goal was set up by Nelson who circled around the net and waited to find the best angle before taking his shot. The shot deflected off Donovan and went in."It wasn?t much of a skilled goal," Donovan said after the game. "I was kind of just going to the net and it kind of nicked off of me. I mean it lifts a little pressure off of you. I mean once you get that first one it feels like it is a little easier out there."But it wasn't simply just that Donovan recorded a goal or that Nelson had two assists that made them stand outs?Friday night. No, it was their prowess on the ice and their comfort level that left a lot of people impressed.Going back to the second period goal by Donovan, it was really an example of Nelson's ability to create scoring chances. ?It was similar to how he set up the goal for Colin McDonald earlier in the period. His patience, and a little bit of luck, helped create both scoring opportunities."I try to implement that every now and then,"Nelson said when asked about his patience on the ice. "When the chance came I think I was able to capitalize. I think I got a little luck and hit a stick and it went right to [Colin McDonald's] stick and he was able to tap it in. Sometimes it?s good to be lucky.Also on display against Nashville was the ease both players have had in fitting in on the Islanders NHL squad. Yes, both Donovan and Nelson have played at least one game in the NHL before this year, but that doesn't always mean they have an edge over another player who hasn't. However Donovan and Nelson haven't missed a beat in a practice or game.Donovan, the 23-year-old Oklahoma native, said he's had some nerves every game due to his lack of NHL experience, though he seems to hide those nerves well. "I?m just getting over the nerves the first couple of shifts. I think I?m getting more comfortable as the preseason goes on," he said.Nelson, who like Donovan has had a lot of expectations put on him this year in camp, has been just trying to go every game and play mistake free hockey."I think I just wanted to go out there and play and relax," Nelson said. "Not worry too much about making mistakes. I think I was able to do that and our line was able to generate some chances. I think we had a lot of momentum going our way, so I think that helped."And their strong performance against Nashville did not go unnoticed by head coach Jack Capuano either. He lauded their efforts during his post game press conference."I thought Donovan on the back end really showed his offensive ability," Capuano started off saying. "I love the fact that he activated a lot tonight and moved the puck well. I thought Brock played well. I moved Brock around a little bit tonight. I actually gave him a few shifts with [John Tavares's] line and he was on the ice the one goal they scored with Donovan. I was pleased with the young guys and the way they competed tonight."
Tags: brock nelson, Islanders, matt donovan, Prospects, Christian Arnold
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Training camp rolls on and the competition for NHL roster spots continues, for many of the Islanders prospects they are still a few years away from either making the big club or from the team having to decide whether or not to cut ties with them. For a trio of Islander defenders -- Matt Donovan, Calvin de Haan and Aaron Ness -- this year could be their last shot at making the NHL with the Islanders. For all three players, their entry level contracts will expire at the end of the season. That puts them into a tricky territory of being restricted free agents who don't have arbitration rights. For many players in that situation with the Islanders the last few years, they've had to seek work in Europe because the Islanders retained the player's rights with a qualifying offer at the end of the season, but the player walked away from that offer and the team didn't come back with a better one.Last year, David Ullstrom fell into this category. Ullstrom was a marginal NHL winger for the Islanders, and the team tendered him a qualifying offer at the end of the year. Player and team couldn't come to an agreement, so after three years in the Isles organization, he's headed to Russia. Justin DiBenedetto, Mikko Koskinen and Rhett Rakhshani are other players who fell into this category in recent years. The Islanders retain all of their rights until they become UFA at 27 years of age?(that's why you still hear their names from time-to-time), so they either have to accept the QO and play in Bridgeport or head overseas.Would Donovan fall into this category? It's unlikely. The Islanders would likely be interested in keeping the talented defender in Bridgeport if he doesn't make the team and give him a decent offer and the player, who is still pretty young, would probably stick with the program. He was an AHL All-Star last year and had the inside track for making the team since the summer and was paired with Andrew MacDonald last night. He's certainly a defender the Islanders value.But, with players such as Scott Mayfield, Andrey Pedan, Ville Pokka, Adam Pelech, Griffin Reinhart and Ryan Pulock all either in Bridgeport or going to be there in the next year or so, the Islanders are going to have the luxury of picking and choosing exactly which defenders they want to build their NHL roster with. It's a great problem for the team and a tough one for the players.Would that excess of defenders mean parting ways with a first round pick who has run into a plethora of injury trouble such as de Haan? It's not out of the question. If after three years, multiple shoulder injuries and -- we'll assume for the sake of argument -- not making the team, it could finally be time to cut ties with the tough-luck defender as so many top prospects are waiting in the wings. After trading up to select him back in 2009, it would be the second failed first round pick of Garth Snow's tenure, behind arguable Nino Niederreiter. Sometimes it's not the players talent that causes things to not work out, it's just the circumstances and that could certainly be true in the case of de Haan.For a player like Ness, who is already on the back burner when it comes to discussion about who is going to fill out the NHL roster this year his fate may already be sealed. He's already behind Donovan and Thomas Hickey for "small, pucking moving defender" and the tons of prospects behind him will only make things worse.The Islanders have some decisions to make about which defenders they want to keep on the NHL roster for opening night, and there are some other important decisions to make about those defenders down the road. For this trio, it could be their last NHL training camp as Islanders prospects. For Donovan, that may mean he'll be back at Islanders camp next year as a bona-fide NHLer. For de Haan and Ness, the future isn't quite so clear.
Tags: aaron ness, calvin de haan, Islanders, matt donovan, Kevin Schultz
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Newsday is reporting that Brian Strait will miss 6-8 weeks with a broken ankle after going feet first into the boards during today's second period. With only 10 weeks left in the season, that will likely end Strait's season.

The Islanders have activated Radek Martinek from the injured reserve, and you can expect that either Martinek or Thomas Hickey will be in the lineup tomorrow. Matt Carkner is traveling with the team on the road trip, so he's probably close, but is still on IR.

If all else fails, the Islanders still have Matt Donovan in Bridgeport. Donovan was an AHL All-Star this season, has 27 points in 48 games and is third on the team in +/-, leading all Sound Tigers defensemen with a +7. Just saying.

Tags: brian strait, Islanders, matt donovan, News, Editorial Aside
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Last night the AHL All-Star Game took place in Providence, RI and it featured two Sound Tigers: Matt Donovan and Nino Niederreiter. Both were voted as starters for the game for the Eastern Conference, certainly a positive for the players and organization. The West won the game 7-6 -- low scoring for an ASG, maybe? -- and the only tally for the two Sound Tigers was a between-the-legs second assist from Niederreiter.

Sunday night was the skills competition and Donovan took part in the hardest shot contest:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ctoxxlVwbNc

Tags: griffin reinhart, Islanders, matt donovan, News, nino niederreiter, Editorial Aside, Prospects, Sound Tigers
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Awesome Visnovsky photoshop credit: HF Boards

"He's under contract with the Islanders and he should be here," Garth Snow told the assembled media yesterday. The 'he', of course, is Lubomir Visnovsky the staying/going/not coming defenseman of the Islanders and, more recently, HC Slovan. Visnovsky has until 10am today to report to the Island or be suspended. By the looks of it, he's not coming and we'll have an international incident to wait and see what the next steps are. If the KHL doesn't enforce the memorandum, this may end up in court. We'll have to wait and see.

Tags: garth snow, Islanders, jack capuano, lubomir visnovsky, matt donovan, matt martin, michael grabner, News, nino niederreiter, Editorial Aside
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Earlier today, the Islanders' Oklahoman defender Matt Donovan took a few minutes to discuss a wide range of topics. Donovan, 22, is one of a group of young defense prospects that made his NHL debut last year for the Islanders and is hoping to turn that into a regular gig at the Coliseum this fall. He is also active on Twitter @squatchdonovan and was honored in Oklahoma City earlier this summer on Matt Donovan Day.

In April, you played your first few NHL games; how did that feel?

Matt Donovan: It was unbelievable. As a kid coming from Oklahoma you don't see that at all -- I was the first born and raised kid from Oklahoma to make it to the NHL -- and that was a pretty cool feeling. As any kid knows growing up playing hockey anywhere it's your dream to play in the NHL and I finally made that dream a reality. It was very cool to play in the NHL a couple games and hopefully many more to come.

Tags: Exclusive, exclusive, Interviews, interviews, matt donovan, Editorial Aside, Prospects
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It's not very often that I'll highlight a marketing gimmick here at Point Blank; the site has always had that independent tagline at the top and I intend to uphold that (OK,?we probably can't say bad things about the Mets but other than that it's true).?I'm also not going to ignore something awesome either. To explain, let's start with this tweet from the Sound Tigers' Official account yesterday:

? The Sound Tigers (@TheSoundTigers) August 16, 2012Oh yeah, that's a totally normal hockey tweet for mid-August... Or not.

Tags: ahl, matt donovan, minor league promotions, Editorial Aside, Sound Tigers, sound tigers, storm
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