New York Islanders vs. Tampa Bay Lightning Preview: No Stamkos, no Hedman, no problem?

Obviously the Isles miss Joensuu. - Bruce Bennett

Let's really try to win THIS one, guys.

Coming off their third consecutive home overtime loss -- separated by a 1-4 road trip -- the New York Islanders will ice the same lineup as in the 1-0 OT defeat to Montreal.

That means Evgeni Nabokov is in net again, Colin McDonald and Matt Carkner are scratched, and Casey Cizikas remains out with his jaw bludgeoning, even though he had returned to practice.

Tb-slim_medium Nyi-islestickslim_medium
Lightning (19-11-3, 3rd/Atl) @ Islanders (9-19-6, 8th/Met)
7 p.m. EST | MSG+ | WRHU/WRCN
Nassau [gloriously unsponsored] Veterans Mem. Coliseum
Electric Slide: Raw Charge

This is the teams' first meeting of the season, and for a change the Isles get a team that is wounded and off its earlier peak form. No longer leading the NEW Atlantic but still playing well -- their shot/possession numbers are actually trending upward -- they are nonetheless out with two key players that will make an Islanders loss feel all the more deflating.

If it can get any more deflating.

For the Lightning:

Random factoid from the official site's morning skate post:

The Islanders are 40-35-7 all-time against the Lightning.

But only 1-4 IN PLAYOFFS AM I RIGHT?

For what it's worth, the Isles swept the season series 3-0 last season. Then again, the Isles made the playoffs last season.

FIG Picks

Leave your First Islanders Goal picks here. Surely it can't be two shutouts in a row, right Bishop?

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Lighthouse Hockey

You must be a member of Lighthouse Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Lighthouse Hockey. You should read them.

Join Lighthouse Hockey

You must be a member of Lighthouse Hockey to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Lighthouse Hockey. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker